In an effort to help medical workers protect themselves from the COVID-19 breakout, Apple is getting into a whole new business: medical supplies. A video from Apple CEO Tim Cook
embedded in a tweet reveals that the tech giant is building something rather low tech but very much needed right now. The company will produce as many as 1 million face shields a week. In addition, through its supply chain, Apple has sourced 20 million face masks for doctors and nurses. These are the higher quality N95 masks that filter out a minimum of 95 percent of airborne particles.
Apple says it will churn out as many as one million face shields a week
A shortage of masks and shields has hampered hospital workers battling the coronavirus on the front line. With personal protective equipment (PPE) so scarce, some medical staff have been reusing PPE supplies by disinfecting shields and masks between patients. Doing this increases the risks that these medical workers face. Cook says that each face shield can be assembled in just two minutes and that 100 can be packed inside each box.
Cook said in his video, "We’ve launched a company-wide effort, bringing together product designers, engineering, operations and packaging teams, and our suppliers to design, produce, and ship face shields for health workers. Our first shipment was delivered to Kaiser hospital facilities in the Santa Clara Valley this past week and the feedback from doctors was very positive."
Meanwhile, the 458 Apple Stores outside mainland China remain closed until further notice with many employees working from home handling technical support calls. Employees involved in the design of new hardware and the development of new software are also taking unfinished products and software home to work on. This violates company rules that Apple has had in place since the beginning of time, but we are in the middle of a pandemic so regular rules do not apply.
Things in China appear to be improving and this will apparently allow Apple to introduce the iPhone SE (2020)
on April 15th with the release expected a week later. The handset will resemble the iPhone 8
with a 4.7-inch LCD display carrying a resolution of 750 x 1334. It will be powered by the 7nm A13 Bionic chipset and is expected to be equipped with 3GB of memory. The 64GB model will start at $399.
When it comes to Apple, the major question on everyone's mind is whether Apple will be able to build the 2020 5G iPhone models in enough quantities to support a fall introduction and release of the new phones. Reliable TF International analyst Ming-Chi Kuo says that there will be four new handsets in the iPhone 12
family including the 5.4
-inch iPhone 12, the 6.1-inch iPhone 12 Plus, the 6.1-inch iPhone 12 Pro
and the 6.7-inch iPhone 12 Pro Max
. All four will feature an AMOLED display with a refresh rate of 120Hz providing buttery smooth scrolling and video game animation. The standard models are expected to each feature 4GB of memory with a dual-camera setup (Wide and Ultra-wide); the "Pro" variants will sport 6GB of memory and have Wide, Ultra-wide, and Telephoto cameras mounted on the back. They will also include a LiDar Time of Flight sensor
that will enhance the AR capabilities of the iPhone 12 Pro
While the company that assembles the majority of each year's iPhone models, Foxconn, said last week that it should be able to deliver enough new handsets to allow the iPhone 12 series to go on sale during the holiday shopping season
, a leak that we passed along earlier today suggested that the iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max
might not be launched until late October or early November. According to this leak, the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Plus will both be released during the traditional September time period.