Skip to main content

Digital Trends may earn a commission when you buy through links on our site. Why trust us?

Apple preps more store reopenings ahead of new iPhone launch

Apple is preparing to open more of its retail stores that were shuttered over the summer due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The tech company has been closely monitoring the development of the COVID-19 outbreak in the U.S., reopening stores where infection cases have fallen away while closing ones where spikes have been detected. It’s a pattern that looks set to continue for some time as authorities across the country continue to battle the virus.

Apple has started to inform staff at the soon-to-open stores of their upcoming work schedules, according to a Bloomberg report on Monday, August 24.

Citing sources with knowledge of the matter, the report said that “most” of the stores that are set to reopen in the coming days will require customers to make an appointment ahead of their visit as part of measures to ensure social distancing is maintained on the premises.

The Apple Store experience is very different today compared to how it was before the pandemic started. For example, customers and staff are now required to wear a face covering, with a mask provided if a customer arrives without one.

Temperature checks are also performed at the door, and customers may be asked several health questions to check if they have any symptoms associated with the virus, or if they’ve knowingly been in contact with anyone infected with the condition.

Enhanced deep cleans of stores are also carried out, as well as regular sanitization of all surfaces, display products, and highly trafficked areas.

Apple has 270 stores across the U.S. After closing all of them in March, the company started to reopen some of them in May. However, with COVID-19 infections rising in some areas and falling in others, Apple, like so many other retail chains, has had to open and close stores according to local conditions.

With the tech giant just weeks away from releasing new phones and an updated Apple Watch, the company will be keen to ramp up store openings where conditions permit as it seeks to ensure its new gadgets launch with the strongest possible sales.

Digital Trends has reached out to Apple for details on which stores are about to reopen and we will update this article when we hear back.

Editors' Recommendations

Trevor Mogg
Contributing Editor
Not so many moons ago, Trevor moved from one tea-loving island nation that drives on the left (Britain) to another (Japan)…
Apple iPhone SE 3 render leak shows off an iPhone XR revival
iPhone SE 2020 Product Red

New renders emerged today that purport to show off the Apple iPhone SE 3 (or iPhone SE 2022, if you prefer). The renders, from TenTechReview and leaker David Kowalski, show off an iPhone that looks a lot like the iPhone XR, but in the same body as the iPhone 8-style iPhone SE. Now, there are some caveats here, but let's dive into what the leak says first.

According to the new leak, this year's Phone SE will be a redesign of the 2020 version and look more like a cross between that and an iPhone XR. It'll still have a small and compact body, but it'll drop the bezels and adopt the notch, likely with Face ID replacing Touch ID. Going off the renders, it looks like a budget iPhone 13 Mini more than anything.

Read more
Is Apple ditching the notch on the iPhone 14? I’m not convinced.
Samsung Galaxy phone on counter.

I'm not very good at predicting the future. I'm more of a what's right in front of my face kind of guy. So whenever I see iPhone 14 rumors float around about upcoming phones and tablets, I'll take them in, and if they seem reasonable, I'll assume it's just as good a guess as any other. But when Jon Prosser released a series of renders for the iPhone 14 a full week before the reveal of the iPhone 13, some parts of it gave me pause.

Actually, saying that they gave me pause is disingenuous. I flat-out said I didn't believe them.

Read more
Schlage’s Encode Plus Smart WiFi Deadbolt boasts iPhone, Apple Watch support
Schlage Encode Plus with Apple home keys open with Apple Watch.

Schlage has a long history of making locks that fit people's lifestyles and the company's newest smart lock is no exception. Announced at CES 2022, the Schlage Encode Plus Smart WiFi Deadbolt is the first lock in North America to work with Apple's latest home keys capability in HomeKit.

The idea is simple: you can now store a virtual set of keys to the Schlage lock in your Apple Wallet and access it on your iPhone or Apple Watch. Best of all, you don't even need to unlock your phone or watch to open the deadbolt. Just tap the watch or phone on the lock. We could imagine this feature might come in handy if a friend is dropping you off at home and for some reason, you can't remember any of your codes. If your iPhone is out of juice, Schlage says you may be able to still open the lock for up to five more hours, thanks to Power Reserve.
All the features you want in a smart lock

Read more