According to Bloomberg, Apple reopened 29 of the 42 stores it has in different cities in China. Apple closed its stores in China indefinitely from February 1 amid coronavirus concerns. Though the closure was meant for a week, it continued into the third week, missing the Valentine Day's sales in many stores.
Its stores in Beijing, Shanghai, Shandong, Chengdu, Guangzhou, Sichuan, Guangdong, Henan and Tianjin remained closed in the last three weeks, while the outbreak forced the tech giant to close many of its stores in Asia-Pacific region and Europe as well.
In mainland China, Apple has 42 stores and three of them were opened -- in Chongqing on Feb. 13, in Fujian on Feb. 11 and one in Guangzhou, though all six Apple stores in Hong Kong remained open.
Concerns for medical staff
"The entire Apple family is committed to helping our colleagues, communities, suppliers, partners and customers in China," said Apple in a statement, sharing concerns with those affected by the Coronavirus and those working around the clock to treat, study and contain its spread.
The recent decision to open more stores, however, keeps a strict vigil on customers in the Beijing area as the Wuhan coronavirus outbreak continues. CNBC has aired footage where Apple employees can be seen checking the body temperatures of customers as they enter the store. The stores are also limiting the number of customers allowed in the store at once, resulting in smaller crowds than normally allowed. The customers were also asked to wear masks.
Timings reduced for stores
Further, the number of hours of these stores have been reduced to seven hours from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. local time. The coronavirus outbreak has hit Apple both in terms of shipments and supplies, prompting the company to reduce its estimated revenues this quarter to far below.
In addition, Apple has asked all its retail stores to enhance cleaning demo Apple products at least twice a day and follow best practices for using microfiber cloths as well as hand washing tips for employees.