Apple to start reopening some U.S. stores next week

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Apple will start reopening U.S. retail stores next week, beginning in Idaho, South Carolina, Alabama and Alaska.

The company said Friday it will require “additional safety procedures, including temperature checks, social distancing and face coverings to ensure customers and employees continue to stay healthy.”

Apple said its primary focus in the stores will be providing technical support to customers forced to work and attend school from home amid the coronavirus outbreak.

“Our team is constantly monitoring local heath data and government guidance, and as soon as we can safely open our stores, we will,” Apple said in a statement. “As local guidance varies around the U.S. there may be slight modifications to our procedures.”

The iPhone maker said earlier Friday that it will reopen its 15 retail stores across Germany on May 11 with limited hours and health precautions. The moves expand on Apple’s other recently opened locations in South KoreaAustria and Australia.

Apple’s stores in all other regions outside of China, including the Japan, U.K. and Canada, remain closed. Apple has more than 500 retail stores worldwide.

Apple Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook previously told Bloomberg News he expected at least a few U.S. locations to reopen by mid-May, while retail chief Deirdre O’Brien had said she expects “many more” locations to re-open during the month.

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