The company responsible for selling over 36 million computerized rectangles annually in the United States announced it will temporarily shutter all of its California stores; some Apple stores, however, will honor existing order pickups and Genius Bar appointments up until December 22.

Ahead of next week's Christmas holiday — and amid growing consumer complaints about their ubiquitous earbuds — Cupertino-based Apple has said it will temporarily close more retail stores around the world due to growing COVID-19 case numbers. Now, all 53 of Apple's stores in California, as well as sixteen in the United Kingdom, will close... with no concrete reopening date planned in the foreseeable future.

Photo: Screenshot from Apple

The company's few stores in Mexico and Brazil have also apparently closed, according to a report from The Verge. (This information was previously published by the Apple enthusiast website 9to5Mac.)

Though Apple's mass-closing event wasn't tailed by any sort of formal announcement, the company had alluded to the reason behind the decision in a statement previously procured by Bloomberg.

“Due to current Covid-19 conditions in some of the communities we serve, we are temporarily closing stores in these areas,” reads the statement by Apple. “We take this step with an abundance of caution as we closely monitor the situation and we look forward to having our teams and customers back as soon as possible.”

Again: It's unclear when these stores will again reopen for business. But based on statements released by Apple, it's safe to say that those openings will be predicated on the success of  COVID-19 cases trending downward.

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Image: Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images