According to Bloomberg, the global outbreak of coronavirus is affecting the supply of replacement iPhones at Apple retail stores, as the latter’s supply chain resides in China, the origin of COVID-19.
Apple notified store employees in a memo, saying iPhone replacement supplies would be in short supply for up to four weeks:
The company recently told technical support staff at stores that replacement iPhones for heavily damaged devices will be in short supply for as long as two to four weeks, according to Apple Store employees.
The workers, known as Geniuses, were advised in a memo that they can offer to mail replacement iPhones to customers and provide loaner devices to ease delays.
Some Apple stores have also noticed a shortage of individual parts, according to the employees, who asked not to be identified discussing private information. An Apple spokesman did not respond to requests for comment.
Replacement iPhones are for customers who bring in devices that cannot be repaired on the spot. Apple is letting customers know they can have an option of a replacement being mailed to them.
Earlier this week, Bloomberg reported shortages of iPad Pro at some stores in California, signalling new models were coming or affects from coronavirus on Apple’s supply chain.
Apple currently has 38 of 42 retail stores reopened in China, after temporarily shutting them down due to coronavirus fears. The company is already restricting employee travel overseas to coronavirus hotspots such as Italy, South Korea and China.