June 18, 2024

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Apple’s WWDC to be online only this year due to coronavirus


Apple CEO Tim Cook and designer Jony Ive at WWDC 2019.

James Martin/CNET

For the most up-to-date news and information about the coronavirus pandemic, visit the WHO website.

One of Apple’s biggest events of the year is going online only, following concerns about the novel coronavirus that’s been labeled a pandemic by the World Health Organization.

Apple said its new online Worldwide Developers Conference will allow it to connect with “millions of developers.” “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,” Phil Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of worldwide marketing said in a statement. “We will be sharing all of the details in the weeks ahead.”

Apple is just the latest in a string of companies shifting or cancelling events amid concerns about the coronavirus. Other companies like the internet giants Facebook and Google have also cancelled their respective developer events, which were planned for the spring. Large organizations as well have scuttled their plans, including the annual SXSW music and tech festival in Texas, the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco and the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) in Los Angeles.

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Apple typically uses its WWDC to announce new iOS software with expanded features for its iPhones and iPads, usually released alongside new smartphones in the fall. It also often announces new Mac software, and sometimes devices like the $5,999 Mac Pro desktop and $4,999 Apple Pro Display XDR, both unveiled at last year’s event.

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