With the country of Santa Clara limiting the number of people allowed to gather in one venue, it was only a matter of time before Apple either canceled its annual WWDC developers conference or moved it online. This morning, Apple announced that it will do the latter. Traditionally held in early June at the San Jose Convention Center (located in the county of Santa Clara), the conference usually attracts thousands of developers and the media.
Apple will disseminate additional information about where online to find WWDC 2020 between now and June
In addition to the keynote address, which reveals some of the new features coming to Apple's operating systems like iOS, iPadOS, watchOS, and macOS, Apple holds workshops for developers to attend. The 31st WWDC conference will now have an all-new online format, according to Apple.
Apple's senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing, Phil Schiller, said in a press release, "We are delivering WWDC 2020 this June in an innovative way to millions of developers around the world, bringing the entire developer community together with a new experience. The current health situation has required that we create a new WWDC 2020 format that delivers a full program with an online keynote and sessions, offering a great learning experience for our entire developer community, all around the world. We will be sharing all of the details in the weeks ahead."
Apple now has over 23 million registered developers in 155 countries and regions and the conference will supply them with the tips and tools needed to help them create apps for Apple devices. Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president of Software Engineering, said, "With all of the new products and technologies we’ve been working on, WWDC 2020 is going to be big. I look forward to our developers getting their hands on the new code and interacting in entirely new ways with the Apple engineers building the technologies and frameworks that will shape the future across all Apple platforms."
Sometime between now and June, Apple will share more information on how developers will be able to go online and participate in the new WWDC format. This information will be sent via email to registered Apple developers, in the Apple Developer app and on the Apple Developer website.
Earlier this month, Google canceled its Google I/O developers conference that was scheduled for May 12th through the 14th at the Shoreline Amphitheater in Mountain View, California. At the time, Google said, "we have decided to cancel the physical Google I/O event at Shoreline Amphitheatre," and the company added that it would look at alternative ways to connect with it developer community.
Apple has also committed to donating $1 million to various organizations in the San Jose area. The company hopes that this will make up for revenue lost by local businesses that normally serve the conference's attendees.
The coronavirus has caused Apple to lose business in various ways. The firm's manufacturing partners in China such as Foxconn and Wistron had to shut down for a couple of weeks and production is being ramped up. As we mentioned last weekend, New York City shoppers are having a hard time finding the latest iPhone models in certain configurations at carrier-owned stores. At one time, all 42 Apple Stores in China were closed but they have now reopened albeit with limited hours. All Apple Stores in Italy have been closed due to the country-wide shut down.
Apple also warned investors at the end of January when it released its fiscal first quarter earnings that revenue would be in between a much wider range than usual ($63 billion-$67 billion) for the current quarter that ends this month. Apple subsequently said that when it reports its fiscal second quarter results in late April-early May, revenue will be under the low end of that range.