Apple is taking a breaking from making iPhones & iPads to ramp up production of face shields to help medical workers combat the Coronavirus. The first shipment was delivered this week.
Apple, who closed down their China locations earlier this year, but have since re-opened them, has been hammered hard by the Coronavirus. Both in their supply chain, and in consumers purchasing their products.
“Teams across Apple have been working hard on ways we can support our heroic front-line medical professionals,” Cook said. “The feedback from doctors was very positive.”
“We plan to ship over 1 million by the end of this week and over 1 million per week after that,” he said.
“This is truly a global effort, and we’re working continuously and closely with governments at all levels to ensure these are donated to places of greatest need,” he said. “For Apple this is a labor of love and gratitude.”
Apple is dedicated to supporting the worldwide response to COVID-19. We’ve now sourced over 20M masks through our supply chain. Our design, engineering, operations and packaging teams are also working with suppliers to design, produce and ship face shields for medical workers. pic.twitter.com/3xRqNgMThX
— Tim Cook (@tim_cook) April 5, 2020
The assembly for the face shields is designed to be very simple. They ship flat, and can be assembled in less than 2 minutes. Apple also released methods for sterilizing and reusing face shields.
Cook also said that the number of face masks it has procured from its supply chain has risen to more than 20 million, and Apple is coordinating with health officials to send shields where they’re needed.