British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has announced that England will enter a second four-week national blockade, with non-essential store closures and travel restrictions forcing all of Apple’s official flagship stores in the region to face closure throughout November,media reported. Announcing the plan on Saturday, Mr Johnson said it would run from Thursday until December 2.
Shops and other reception-based services will be closed for four weeks, in addition to schools and universities and places offering takeaway and delivery services.
British citizens cannot meet people outside their homes, BBC News reported. Where possible, work from home is encouraged, but the public can still go to work by car.
The new restrictions are limited to England, but other COVID-19 measures have already been implemented in other parts of the country. Like Scotland, it will introduce a series of new regional restrictions from 2 November, with different levels of restrictions on shops, restaurants and tourism. Wales is currently under a 17-day blockade, which ends on 9 November.
The latest blockade of England is understood to have forced 33 of the UK’s 38 flagship Apple stores to close from Thursday. In addition, two apple flagship stores in St. Davies in Cardiff, Wales, and Victoria Square stores in Belfast have been closed, while Apple flagship stores in Glasgow and Edinburgh will remain open.
For consumers, the closure of Apple’s flagship stores and unnecessary travel restrictions will make it harder for them to buy Apple products in person and to pick them up or deliver them in stores. In the coming weeks, most consumers will be ordering the upcoming iPhone 12 mini and iPhone 12 Pro Max online or through carriers, rather than lining up at stores to pick up items.
However, these restrictions may not significantly affect orders at Apple’s online marketables, as mail-order services typically continue to operate during the blockade. However, some distribution problems may arise as consumers turn to online orders and the number of employees in distribution centers is likely to decrease.
England isn’t the only place where Apple’s flagship store has been temporarily closed as a precaution, but it’s the latest place to implement stricter measures.