Apple won’t be making the trip to Austin this year.


James Martin/CNET

Apple has reportedly joined the growing list of tech companies opting not to participate in the SXSW conference and festivals amid growing coronavirus concerns. Amazon has also reportedly canceled its plans to attend the massive culture and tech event, after Twitter, Facebook and TikTok withdrew earlier this week.

The big conference, also known as South by Southwest, is scheduled from March 13 to March 22 in Austin, Texas. The drop in participation from major tech companies raises questions about whether SXSW will be canceled in the weeks before it’s scheduled to kick off. More than 25,000 people have signed a petition on Change.org calling for the cancellation of SXSW. On Wednesday, however, Austin health officials said SXSW would go on as planned

Apple withdrew on Wednesday, according to Variety. The company had planned to screen three new Apple TV Plus originals at the festival, including the world premiere of Spike Jonze’s documentary Beastie Boys Story.

The coronavirus, which was found in China in December, has infected more than 90,000 people and killed more than 3,000. The virus causes a respiratory illness called COVID-19.

Apple representatives didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

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