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Apple to Reopen Some Stores in Beijing on Feb. 14

The company previously closed all its stores in China in an effort to combat the spread of coronavirus.
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Less than a week after announcing that it was extending retail store closures in China due to concerns about the coronavirus, Apple  (AAPL) - Get Free Report announced that it will reopen some Beijing stores on Feb. 14.

The company will open its five stores in Beijing between 11 a.m. and 6 p.m. on Friday, which is shorter that its usual store operating hours of 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Many of the company’s other stores in mainland China will remain closed however, as the country works to get the coronavirus pandemic under control.

Meanwhile, Reuters reported on Wednesday that Apple manufacturer Foxconn was hoping to resume 50% of its production in China by the end of February, and 80% by March, citing a source familiar with the matter. Its factories have remained closed or severely understaffed due to the coronavirus outbreak.  

Last week, analysts at Morgan Stanley said that the coronavirus could be an unexpected boon for Apple. Specifically, Apple’s App Store could see a jump in activity as Chinese people look to ride out the burgeoning pandemic indoors while, presumably, being on their phones.

As evidence for this assertion, Morgan Stanley notes that Chinese search giant Tencent  (TCEHY)  announced last week that they are expanding server capacity to meet demand for gamers attempting to play Game for Peace, following a surge in activity during the Chinese New Year that overwhelmed the company’s servers

Apple shares were down 0.6% to $325.02 in morning trading Thursday.