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Apple is planning to begin reopening its retail stores beginning with its sole Apple Store in South Korea, located in Seoul's Gangnam district.

applestoresouthkorea.jpg

The store's page says that it will be opening at 12:00 p.m. local time on Saturday, April 18. It will operate on limited hours for the next several days, opening at noon and closing at 8:00 p.m. In a statement to Bloomberg, Apple said the store will focus on support rather than sales when it reopens.
Apple said in a statement that "South Korea has shown great progress during the spread of COVID-19," prompting the company to reopen its Seoul store on April 18. The location will operate on an adjusted schedule to begin with "to ensure customers and employees continue to stay healthy." Apple also said it will be focusing on support, rather than sales, to begin with.

"A focus for the store will be service and support at the Genius Bar," Apple said in a statement Thursday. "For customers who want to make a purchase, we have several options including ordering online for delivery or pick up in store."
Apple's retail locations outside of China have been closed since March 14, when Apple shut down all stores amid the global health crisis.

In a March note sent out to employees, Apple's retail chief Deirdre O'Brien said that Apple planned to begin opening stores in the first half of April. "We will reopen our stores on a staggered basis. At this time, we anticipate some stores may be able to open in the first half of April depending on the conditions in their community," she told employees.

Apple plans to begin reopening stores in the United States starting in early May, with the company likely planning to relaunch stores on a rolling basis over a period of weeks based on local conditions and guidelines.

Article Link: Apple to Reopen First Store in South Korea on April 18
 

shigzeo

macrumors 6502a
Dec 14, 2005
711
77
Japan
I had no idea SK had Apple Stores. When I lived there, servicing or purchasing Apple products were still pioneering actions. Yay Covid! I learn something new.
 

iKwick7

macrumors 65816
Dec 29, 2004
1,079
32
The Wood of Spots, NJ
I’d hope that when things start reopening here (US, but really the same for everywhere else) all the companies take it very seriously. Continue with an insane amount of cleaning and wiping things down. Limit the amount of people allowed in store. Limit the amount of tables in restaurants (remove tables in the first place), etc.

At the very least, Apple stores need to no longer be these insanely packed places where people obviously are going just to hang out and play. That’s hot to be shut down.
 
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bryanios

macrumors member
Sep 25, 2017
36
29
I had no idea SK had Apple Stores. When I lived there, servicing or purchasing Apple products were still pioneering actions. Yay Covid! I learn something new.

Not true about purchasing. There has been an authorized reseller called Frisbee in the nation. Yes it was tricky for the servicing or going to Genius Bar etc, which led people to get Korean phones like Samsung or LG more than iPhones.
 

Relentless Power

macrumors Nehalem
Jul 12, 2016
36,415
40,084
I’d hope that when things start reopening here (US, but really the same for everywhere else) all the companies take it very seriously. Continue with an insane amount of cleaning and wiping things down. Limit the amount of people allowed in store. Limit the amount of tables in restaurants (remove tables in the first place), etc.

At the very least, Apple stores need to no longer be these insanely packed places where people obviously are going just to hang out and play. That’s hot to be shut down.

‘Social distancing‘ will be a very real thing, especially when you look at Apple stores moving forward. You won’t be seeing lines anymore in terms of ‘opening day’ releases, and there will probably be a limit amount of people allowed in the stores. And the reality is, that’s how it should be. Because this isn't something that we just will ‘go away’, normal is not a word we can associate any more Given the circumstances.
 

Dwalls90

Contributor
Feb 5, 2009
5,256
3,605
I’d hope that when things start reopening here (US, but really the same for everywhere else) all the companies take it very seriously. Continue with an insane amount of cleaning and wiping things down. Limit the amount of people allowed in store. Limit the amount of tables in restaurants (remove tables in the first place), etc.

At the very least, Apple stores need to no longer be these insanely packed places where people obviously are going just to hang out and play. That’s hot to be shut down.

I think the companies that care about their brand will. No company wants "New COVID-19 outbreak at ABC company in XYX city" in the headlines.
 
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nfl46

macrumors 604
Oct 5, 2008
7,453
5,938
I know some people will be happy when the stores reopening in Early May, because their device has been stuck there for a while, lol.

Apple will likely limit how many people thats allowed in the stores.
 

itsmilo

Suspended
Sep 15, 2016
3,985
8,725
Berlin, Germany
Here only stores less than 800 qm are allowed to open up again next week and no more than 40 people at a time with people having to line up outside keeping the 1,5 Meter distance
 

sofila

macrumors 65816
Jan 19, 2006
1,110
1,239
Ramtop Mountains
I am curious about that. My guess is that Apple stores approach will be significantly different and we'll have a first sight on what may happen to our future "usual daily business" behavior
 

newyorksole

macrumors 601
Apr 2, 2008
4,508
5,289
New York.
‘Social distancing‘ will be a very real thing, especially when you look at Apple stores moving forward. You won’t be seeing lines anymore in terms of ‘opening day’ releases, and there will probably be a limit amount of people allowed in the stores. And the reality is, that’s how it should be. Because this isn't something that we just will ‘go away’, normal is not a word we can associate any more Given the circumstances.

Yeah and honestly... This will just be a lot of people’s personal choice. I’m sure Apple will have guidelines in place, but even if they didn’t... People wouldn’t want to go to Apple if it looks like it’s getting busy/crowded.

I bet there won’t be anymore homeless folks hogging computers all day either. (Yes that happens all across NYC at Apple Stores)
 
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ctyrider

macrumors 65816
Jul 15, 2012
1,009
583
Good to see the real first-world countries (SK, Japan, Singapore, Hong Kong) handle the pandemic as it should it have been handled.
 

nicho

macrumors 601
Feb 15, 2008
4,096
3,007
‘Social distancing‘ will be a very real thing, especially when you look at Apple stores moving forward. You won’t be seeing lines anymore in terms of ‘opening day’ releases, and there will probably be a limit amount of people allowed in the stores. And the reality is, that’s how it should be. Because this isn't something that we just will ‘go away’, normal is not a word we can associate any more Given the circumstances.

I visited a Chinese store the other day looking for an iPad Pro and the entire store was treated like the Genius Bar - i had to tell a guy what i wanted to buy and was allocated a display table to go and wait at. It’s been like that with buying things for a while - making mini “appointments” and having your details taken so the selling people can look for you - but it’s now a stage earlier, before entering the store, and freely browsing isn’t really a thing.
 

UnusedLoginID

macrumors 6502
Feb 28, 2012
276
240
I visited a Chinese store the other day looking for an iPad Pro and the entire store was treated like the Genius Bar - i had to tell a guy what i wanted to buy and was allocated a display table to go and wait at. It’s been like that with buying things for a while - making mini “appointments” and having your details taken so the selling people can look for you - but it’s now a stage earlier, before entering the store, and freely browsing isn’t really a thing.
Did you have to wait in a line outside the store? Was it big? How do they manage a line with social distancing with hundreds of people? Did they check your temperature before entering the store? Did you have to wear a mask? How about the employees? Do you know if they were taking “walk-ins” for the Genius Bar? Knowing all of this will be a good indication on how the Stores reopening will happen here in the US (and Europe). Thank you for your insights.
 

sakurarain

macrumors 6502
Jul 26, 2018
286
195
Shanghai
I just found out that the 2 Apple retail stores in Taiwan are the only ones lucky to have not closed during this pandemic.😇
you are right, thus the MR should precisely write “... outside of GREAT China ...” (Great China = including Taiwan, China = excluding Taiwan) 😆😆😆😆
 

nicho

macrumors 601
Feb 15, 2008
4,096
3,007
Did you have to wait in a line outside the store? Was it big? How do they manage a line with social distancing with hundreds of people? Did they check your temperature before entering the store? Did you have to wear a mask? How about the employees? Do you know if they were taking “walk-ins” for the Genius Bar? Knowing all of this will be a good indication on how the Stores reopening will happen here in the US (and Europe). Thank you for your insights.

I deliberately chose a time during the working day, so there wasn't a line as such. It was pretty much "at" capacity but not above it.

All doors bar one were closed. A security guard took my temperature (despite the mall security also doing so when I entered the mall). Masks compulsory in the mall, so everyone wearing one at the store - employees included. Then i went in and I was basically asked why I was here 🥴 I said I wanted to buy an iPad... they might take walk ins for genius bar but i didn't enquire... I think it would depend on the size of the store/capacity. I can't see this one taking walk ins anytime soon.
 

FlunkedFlank

macrumors member
Sep 21, 2012
68
22
Due to all the touching and crowding involved, Apple Stores have got to be one of the worst potential vectors for covid transmission in all of retail. The entire concept of how Apple Stores work will need to be rethought.
 
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