Apple ramping up COVID-19 testing for employees; reverses course on planned return of in-person Today at Apple sessions

The ongoing coronavirus pandemic is forcing a lot of changes, especially as the Delta variant spreads. While there was a point where it seemed like things might be going back to “normal,” that’s not so much the case anymore. It was just yesterday that Apple planned to welcome back in-person “Today at Apple” sessions at its physical retail stores in the United States and Europe, but it turns out that won’t be happening after all.

In a new report today from Bloomberg, Apple has decided to make some changes in light of the ongoing Delta variant’s spread across the globe. First and foremost, there will be more testing taking place within its retail and corporate sites. The report indicates that Apple is going to ramp up testing for its employees. For employees that are working from home, and who are currently being tested once per week, that will change to two times per week moving forward.

Apple’s memo to these employees reads, in part: “With the emergence of more contagious variants like delta, we believe that more frequent testing will better protect you and everyone at Apple. Beginning Aug. 16, Quest will be sending you two mail-in test kits per week instead of one.”

Apple still won’t be moving to a mandate for testing or vaccinations, according to the report. However, for those participating in the testing, Apple will move to three-times-per-week testing for some employees, especially in retail stores. Corporate employees were initially expected to return to Apple’s corporate locations beginning in September of this year, but the company has pushed that back to at least October. Of course, as today’s report shows, things can change at any moment.

Putting a hold (again) on in-person Today at Apple sessions

It was just yesterday that it was reported by Bloomberg that Apple plans to bring back in-person Today at Apple sessions at many of its physical retail stores in the United States and in Europe. Those sessions were set to return on August 30, and Apple even opened up reservations yesterday. However, it turns out that won’t be the case either. Today’s report indicates that Apple has changed course on the matter and will no longer be restarting its in-person Today at Apple sessions after all.

There’s no word when Apple might bring them back now.

The rise and spread of the Delta variant is forcing companies like Apple and others to make hard choices all over again.