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Apple opens stores with mandatory face masks and temperature checks

Gadget giant Apple is slowly looking to return to normal, but that term now requires major qualification.

Deirdre O’Brien, Apple’s head of retail, wrote a blog designed to update its customers on the state of things regarding its stores. “As of today, nearly 100 of our stores globally have been able to open their doors to our customers again,” writes O’Brien. Around half of these are Chinese stores, which have been open for a while, since the country seemed to have got on top of the coronavirus pandemic.

Now Apple tentatively starting the process of opening its stores in the US. O’Brien pointed people towards its store list, where you can see if one is open or not. It was clearly not designed for Journalists, however, as you have to click on each store before you can find out, which, frankly, we couldn’t be bothered to do. Apple has a total global store count of 510, so we’re still only looking at a small fraction of them.

The store experience won’t be quite as special as it used to be, however, as Apple is putting in place a bunch of special measures designed to mitigate the threat of catching the plague in its stores. “Face coverings will be required for all of our teams and customers, and we will provide them to customers who don’t bring their own,” writes O’Brien.

“Temperature checks will be conducted at the door, 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. Throughout the day, we’re conducting enhanced deep cleanings that place special emphasis on all surfaces, display products, and highly trafficked areas.”

Sounds like a laugh a minute, doesn’t it? Since Apple has had its delivery service up and running for a while and the look and feel of its products have barely changed for years, it’s not obvious what the great need is to risk life and limb for the chance to fondle some shiny things. But each to their own and it looks like Apple fetishists around the world will soon be able to get their fix once more, so long as they’re judged to be sufficiently untainted.


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