Apple says reopening all its branded stores in China

The company sold fewer than half a million iPhones in China in February

Apple Inc is reopening all 42 of its branded stores in China on Friday, a company spokesman said, more than a month after they were shut in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak.

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The iPhone maker's Chinese website listed the opening time for all stores, which varies from 10:00 am to 11:00 am local time. The website had previously carried an advisory saying not all stores were open.

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Apple had announced the shuttering of its branded stores in early February.

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China placed curbs on travel and asked residents to avoid public places in late January, just ahead of the Lunar New Year festival, a major gift-giving holiday. Those restrictions stayed largely in place through most of February.

CORONAVIRUS HAS APPLE WARNING STORES ABOUT A SHORTAGE OF REPLACEMENT IPHONES

The company sold fewer than half a million iPhones in China in February, government data showed on Monday, as the outbreak halved demand for smartphones.

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(Reporting by Ismail Shakil in Bengaluru, Brenda Goh in Shanghai and Stephen Nellis in San Francisco; Editing by Arun Koyyur and Subhranshu Sahu)