Initially, Apple had plans to reopen most, if not all, of its retail storefronts in China on Monday, February 1o. However, due to health concerns related to the spreading coronavirus, Apple amended those plans and confirmed to staff in the region that some stores wouldn’t open until, at the very earliest, later in the week.
And that is indeed the case, with Reuters confirming today, via Apple’s website, that some of its physical retail stores will indeed be opening this week — Friday, February 14, to be exact. The stores reopening are located in Beijing, and they will have limited hours to start. Normally these stores are open from 10;00 AM to 10:00 PM local time, but with the new times the stores will be open from 11:00 AM to 6:00 PM local time.
Five stores in Beijing be opening with the limited hours on February 14.
Apple, among other companies, is still playing it safe when it comes to the potential spread of the coronavirus, and keeping people’s health at the forefront of most of these decisions. Take, for example, the GSM Association (GSMA), which hosts the largest phone trade show in the world with the annual Mobile World Congress. In a pretty much unprecedented move the association decided to cancel the show this week, so MWC 2020 is no longer on the books for later this month.
Other retail stores in China, including storefronts in Shenzhen and Shanghai will remain closed for the time being.
It’s good to see that Apple is taking the slow route with reopening stores. Caution is not necessarily a bad thing here. Hopefully everything can get up and running back the way it was sooner rather than later.