New Delhi: Apple Inc. has warned investors that it is not going to meetits second-quarter financial guidance because the viral outbreak in China hascut production of iPhones. The California-based company said Monday that all ofits iPhone manufacturing facilities are outside Hubei province, the epicenterof the outbreak, and all have been reopened. But the company said production isramping up slowly. “The health and well-being of every person who helps makethese products possible is our paramount priority, and we are working in close consultation with our suppliers and public health experts as this ramp continues,” Apple said in a statement.
The death toll from COVID-19, a disease caused by the new coronavirus, was 1,770 as of Monday. Apple says demand for iPhones is also down in China because many of Apple’s 42 retail stores there are closed or operating with reduced hours. China is Apple’s third largest retail market for iPhones,after the US and Europe. Outside China, Apple said iPhone demand has been strong andis in line with the company’s expectations. On Jan. 28, Apple said it expected second quarter revenue between $63 billion and $67 billion. Apple’s secondquarter ends March 30. Apple says the situation is evolving and it will providemore information on its next earnings call in April. The death toll from China’s coronavirus epidemic climbed to1,868 on Tuesday as 98 more people died while the total number of confirmedcases jumped to 72,436, officials said. Of the new deaths, 93 were reportedfrom Hubei Province, the epicentre of the virus, three from Henan, and one eachfrom Hebei and Hunan, said the National Health Commission.
Hubei reported 1,807 new confirmed cases, taking the total number of such cases to 59,989 in the province. Another 1,432 new suspected cases were reported from the rest of China. On Monday, 1,097 patients became seriously ill and 11,741 patientsremained in severe condition, the commission said. Of the 41,957 patientshospitalised in Hubei, 9,117 were still in severe condition and another 1,853 in critical condition, the state-run Xinhua news agency reported.