Apple is being proactive in its response to the global spread of COVID-19. The company recently canceled Today at Apple sessions worldwide and closed retail stores in Itlay, South Korea, and China. Now it is extending these preventative measures to its offices and retail stores in the U.S.
According to Apple’s website, the company has canceled Today at Apple sessions in both Seattle, Washington and the San Francisco Bay Area. The cancellation applies to all of the company’s bay area stores and five of its six Washington retail locations. Other California retail stores and Washington stores outside of Seattle are not affected by the cancellations.
Apple is targeting California and Washington because both San Francisco and Seattle have seen growing numbers of coronavirus cases. As the virus spreads, these cancellations may extend to other retail locations in the U.S.
These cancellations may affect the company’s Internal Women’s Day events, which feature hands-on labs and Today at Apple sessions. This month-long celebration was meant to highlight the achievements of women in arts, technology and beyond.
Apple CEO Tim Cook recently sent out a memo advising employees at several global offices to work from home if their job allows it. This policy applies to offices in coronavirus hotspots, including California, Seattle, South Korea, Japan, Italy, Germany, France, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom.
To protect its employees and customers, Apple also is taking steps to minimize the number of people in stores by reducing Genius bar appointments and limiting the number of seats at Apple classes. Apple also is asking retail employees to continue deep cleaning within the stores.