Apple, the dear reader, has been missing you — and it’s banking on the fact that you’ve been missing the opportunity to touch its products before you buy them, too.
In an effort to ease this assuredly mutual feeling of longing, the company confirmed on Friday plans to begin reopening some of its U.S. stores as early as Monday. Apple had been aiming for a May reopening for some time, but now it’s official.
So reports CNBC, which notes that the openings are, for now, limited to stores in four states: Idaho, South Carolina, Alabama, and Alaska.
The “support” in question, notes CNN Business, is the Genius Bar — a place where people with busted Apple products can go for repairs. If customers do indeed show up, Apple will require them to wear masks and they will reportedly undergo temperature checks (though, with reports of pre-symptomatic transmissions, this latter precaution may only be sort of helpful).
Only a set number of customers will be permitted in each store at once and it’s quite possible any overflow will be required to wait in line outside.
“Our team is constantly monitoring local health data and government guidance, and as soon as we can safely open our stores, we will,” an Apple spokesperson told CNBC.
Of course, things may not go as planned. Apple had reportedly aimed to reopen at least some of its U.S. stores as soon as the first half of April. And, yeah, that didn’t exactly work out.
While this reopening is, for the time being, only limited to a few stores, we imagine that Apple executives will be watching closely for a sign that it can be done safely before expanding to all U.S. stores.
Fingers crossed for all the Genius Bar employees that Apple’s gambit goes well, lest they pay for any missteps with their health.