Apple Explains How Its Reopened Retail Stores Will Be Different
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We've been hearing how Apple intends to slowly start reopening its retail stores in the coming weeks, but now we know how different an experience it will be for visitors.
Deirdre O’Brien, Apple's senior vice president of retail and people, published a letter to customers on the Apple website yesterday detailing the company's approach to reopening stores. The decision to reopen any particular store will be driven by the available data. O'Brien explains, "We look at every available piece of data — including local cases, near and long-term trends, and guidance from national and local health officials. These are not decisions we rush into." She also makes it clear that if conditions change locally, Apple won't hesitate to close a location again.
Once a store is open, don't expect the same experience you had before the pandemic. Apple is understandably taking a number of precautions to protect the team working in the store as well as customers. Several deep cleans will be carried out daily at each location, and the focus is shifting to a one-to-one service, meaning far fewer customers in a store at any one time.
All Apple employees working in a store will be required to wear a face mask, as will customers, but Apple will provide a mask for any customer who doesn't have one. However, before entry a temperature check will be carried out and "posted health questions will screen for those with symptoms — like cough or fever — or who have had recent exposure to someone infected with COVID-19." Such actions are clearly going to result in lines forming outside of retail stores, so O'Brien also highlights the availability of curbside pickup from stores after ordering online as an alternative.
If you want to know when your local store is open again, enter your city, state or ZIP code into Apple's Find a Store page.