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© Valentin Armianu |

Apple Stores reopen, with mandatory masks and temperature checks

When parts of China began shutting down because of the coronavirus, we wondered whether Apple and other companies that rely on suppliers overseas would crumble. For Apple, it’s been so far, so good.

This year, Tim Cook and his team have released a new iPad Pro, a refreshed iPhone SE and new MacBook Pro. Next up are the rumored AirPods Studio, over-the-ear headphones without the word “Beats” on the box.

Keep reading for what else is coming and more info on the 100 Apple brick-and-mortar stores that reopened this week.

A slow reopening

Apple has reopened about 100 retail locations across the globe, with a few notable changes including “enhanced deep cleanings” throughout the day and a limit to how many people can enter at once.

But that’s got nothing on mandatory temperature checks and face masks. If you don’t have a mask, one will be provided at the door. Don’t worry if all that gets your blood boiling — that shouldn’t register on the thermometer.

In case it wasn’t abundantly clear, now is not the time to go to the Apple Store without an appointment.

And then there’s the iPhone 12

It looks like Apple is still on target to hold its fall event to debut the iPhone 12 lineup. Expect the standard 12, the Pro and the Pro Max, as well as another iPhone with a 5.4-inch screen, because, well … we don’t know.

Maybe Apple just wants to make sure there’s an iPhone that fits any hand.

iPads: Gotta catch ‘em all

Apple might also be doing the same with the iPad, according to an analyst via MacRumors. Here are past and current iPad screen sizes:

  • iPad mini (5th generation) – 7.9-inch screen
  • iPad (1st-6th generation) – 9.7-inch screen
  • iPad (7th generation) – 10.2-inch screen
  • iPad Air (3rd generation) – 10.5-inch screen
  • iPad Pro (1st and 2nd generation) – 11-inch screen
  • iPad Pro (1st, 2nd and 3rd generation) – 12.9-inch screen

A 10.8-inch iPad and a not-as-mini iPad mini with a screen somewhere in the 8.5-inch to 9-inch range are expected sometime next year. Let us know if you manage to collect them all!

Don’t let your old iPad or iPhone sit around collecting dust. Here are 10 clever DIY ways to revitalize your old gadgets.

Beam me up, Scotty?

If you’ve been waiting for the day you could turn your iPhone into a medical tricorder like you see on “Star Trek,” you’re finally in luck — sort of. Back in 2018, Butterfly Networks released a handheld ultrasound device called the Butterfly iQ that connects to a smartphone or tablet. 

Now the tech is being used to “see” things like broken bones and potential lung conditions. The part about lung conditions is especially important now when it comes to monitoring symptoms and side effects of COVID-19.

Yeah, it’s an amazing diagnostic tool, but one that’s sadly not available for the masses. The Butterfly iQ is for use only by “qualified and trained healthcare practitioners.”

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