Tim Cook shutters all Apple Stores outside greater China for two weeks

No Genius Bar appointments until March 27 at the earliest.

From Cook’s statement to the “worldwide Apple family” posted early Saturday on the Apple Newsroom:

As of today, all of our stores in Greater China have reopened. I also want to thank our operations team and partners for their remarkable efforts to restore our supply chain. What we’ve learned together has helped us all develop the best practices that are assisting enormously in our global response.

One of those lessons is that the most effective way to minimize risk of the virus’s transmission is to reduce density and maximize social distance. As rates of new infections continue to grow in other places, we’re taking additional steps to protect our team members and customers.

We will be closing all of our retail stores outside of Greater China until March 27. We are committed to providing exceptional service to our customers. Our online stores are open at www.apple.com, or you can download the Apple Store app on the App Store. For service and support, customers can visit support.apple.com.

My take: Service and support is where this really hurts. In my experience, Apple stores are usually crowded with customers either browsing or waiting patiently for a “genius” to serve their needs.

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  1. Kathy Corby said:
    Now is when the legendary quality and durability of Apple products come to the fore. Most of our devices will “just work “. There is a reasonable possibility that phone support will continue to function. Finally, for those of us self isolating or those of us quarantined, I just discovered that UPS will pick up items from your home, so if worse comes to worse, you can fire off your malfunctioning Apple device that way. Stay strong, stay safe.

    March 14, 2020
  2. Jacob Feenstra said:
    Apple has shown decisive leadership in this global crisis. They will be rewarded.

    March 14, 2020
  3. Robert Harris said:
    I’m assuming that this includes USA.

    March 14, 2020
    • John Konopka said:
      I just walked past our local store in California. Sign says closed till March 27. Handful of staff inside. The large, walk sized display is shutdown.

      March 14, 2020
  4. Fred Stein said:
    One more proof point that Tim Cook is the best leader across all industries.

    March 14, 2020
    • Gianfranco Pedron said:
      I would follow Tim Cook into battle without hesitation … other “leaders” not so much.

      “Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.”
      ― Peter Drucker

      Let’s hope that, come Monday, Wall Street applauds Apple’s courageous action and not punish AAPL. We’ll soon find out if there is any humanity left in the hearts of those greedy basta … who prey on human misery.

      March 14, 2020
  5. Kirk DeBernardi said:

    A core tenet of Apple and Tim Cook and one of their most admirable qualities.

    I’ve often thought that if I should ever completely sell my stake in AAPL, it would be difficult to walk away from such a company and it’s leadership because of their humanity.

    It’s a bond that goes beyond financial enhancement and what makes investing in Apple spiritually rewarding also.

    Puts a warm smile on my face.

    March 14, 2020
  6. George Ewonus said:
    I subscribe to the Apple Joint Venture program for business. It normally provides access to “Speak with a Genius” online 5 days a week. As of this morning it appears that function is still up. I can book an appointment online for Monday or any other day next week. That may indicate phone support will proceed normally.

    March 14, 2020

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