If you’re an Apple user stuck at home with a wonky device or waiting on one that’s stuck in the shop, help may be on its way soon as Apple is reportedly going to start reopening its U.S. stores starting in May.
According to retail employees who spoke to Bloomberg, the latest info about Apple’s retail locations came from Apple vice president Deirdre O’Brien who detailed Apple’s plans during an internal weekly video update. While O’Brien didn’t provide details about specific dates or locations, she did say that Apple is “continuing to analyze this health situation in every location, and I do expect we will reopen up many more stores in May.”
Shortly after the initial outbreak of covid-19, Apple closed all of its stores in China, before slowly reopening them in February following a few delays. However, outside of China, all Apple stores have been closed since March 13 in order to help prevent the spread of the disease. And while some Apple store locations like the one in Seoul have recently started to reopen, the same has yet to happen at any U.S. retail locations.
Unfortunately, that meant anyone who hadn’t picked up an Apple device that had been left at a store for service before mid-March has been stranded without a lot of options.
Apple’s goal to potentially reopen stores in May looks to coincide with a number of states’ plans including California and New York that are hoping to slowly lift or relax shelter in place orders starting sometime next month. States like Georgia and Texas have taken steps to reopen businesses sooner and faced significant criticism.
Additionally, Bloomberg says Apple retail employees have started training and working from home in order to help prepare the company to begin reopening stores in May.
So while the covid-19 pandemic is still far from over, Apple reopening its stores might be a small but welcome return to normalcy, and potentially a big help for anyone needing a new work-from-home machine or some local tech support.