Apple temporarily closes stores in China amid virus outbreak
Posted: 8:04 AM, Feb 02, 2020
Chinese security guards march past an Apple store in Beijing, China, Wednesday, March 6, 2019. China’s emergence as a competitor in key technologies such as smartphones and telecoms equipment has rattled Washington and other governments that worry Chinese competition is a threat to their industries and employment. Such concerns underscore a standoff between the U.S. and China over Huawei Technologies, the world’s biggest maker of telecom infrastructure for new high-speed 5G networks. Washington has been pushing hard to exclude the Chinese company from building the backbone of the future internet. (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan)
SAN FRANCISCO — Apple is temporarily closing its 42 stores in mainland China, one of its largest markets, as a new virus spreads rapidly and the death toll there rose to 304 on Saturday.
The iPhone maker said in a statement it was closing stores, corporate offices and contact centers in China until Feb. 9 “out of an abundance of caution and based on the latest advice from leading health experts.”
China is the company’s third biggest market in terms of sales behind the United States and Europe and it is also where most iPhones and other devices are made.
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