Apple’s CEO Tim Cook has told employees at most of the company’s offices around the world that they can work from home during the coronavirus outbreak, should they feel unwell or want to protect themselves and their families from the potential spread of the virus.
The company has also announced new policies in light of the outbreak.
From March 9 to March 13, employees have been told to “feel free to work remotely if your job allows,” and that updates on longer-term working situations would be provided at the end of the week.
On Friday, the company encouraged its employees in California and Seattle to work from home where possible, and now this has been extended to all of the company’s corporate locations, including the United Kingdom, Europe, Japan, and South Korea.
This does not affect Apple Retail Stores, though policies have been put in place to help those employees.
Indeed, Apple is now deep cleaning Apple Stores around the world, and it’s limiting the number of spaces at its Today at Apple sessions and Genius Bar to reduce the spread.
The company has also promised to pay hourly contract workers their usual wages, whatever the outcome of the virus. An employee that enters self-quarantine, for example, won’t have to worry about paying their bills, encouraging people to do the right thing for society.
A report from Bloomberg added that the company was working on managerial changes to help reduce the spread of the virus amongst those who still had to come into their offices.
There’s still no word on WWDC, but with several other high-profile technology conferences canceled in recent weeks, it now seems more than likely that Apple will halt its annual event, or move the event online and allow people to see new macOS and iOS builds from home.
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