Less than a month ago, Apple was reopening stores to walk-in customers. But with confirmed coronavirus cases rising again, the company is reversing course, CNN reports. A total of 11 stores in Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Arizona will close temporarily. The specific locations can be found here via 9to5mac. "We take this step with an abundance of caution as we closely monitor the situation," a company statement said. The closings will start Saturday, giving customers who dropped their devices off to be repaired a chance to retrieve them. All 11 stores were shut in March, then reopened with masks and temperature checks required, per CNBC.
An executive had warned at the time, per TechCrunch, that reopening a store "in no way means that we won’t take the preventative step of closing it again should local conditions warrant." Apple was among the first chain retailers to shut stores when the pandemic hit. Although the lost sales at the 11 stores won't have much impact on Apple, per the Wall Street Journal, one market analyst called the closings worrisome. The move reflects "the volatility and fluidity of this COVID environment," he said, and indicate that coronavirus flareups could continue to affect retailers' decisions. (Read more Apple stories.)