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Apple moves WWDC online amidst coronavirus concerns

WWDC 2020 is scheduled to happen in June this year and will be online-only

FILE PHOTO: Apple Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook speaks at the Apple Worldwide Developer conference (WWDC) in San Jose, California, U.S., June 4, 2018. REUTERS/Elijah Nouvelage/File Photo FILE PHOTO: Apple Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook speaks at the Apple Worldwide Developer conference (WWDC) in San Jose, California, U.S., June 4, 2018. REUTERS/Elijah Nouvelage/File Photo
FILE PHOTO: Apple Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook speaks at the Apple Worldwide Developer conference (WWDC) in San Jose, California, U.S., June 4, 2018. REUTERS/Elijah Nouvelage/File Photo (REUTERS)

Apple has joined other big tech companies in deciding to call off the on-ground event of its Worldwide Developers Conference, better known as WWDC, and to move it entirely online.

In its 31st year, WWDC 2020 will be an online-only event instead of the meet that is hosted in San Jose every year.

This decision of course comes amidst the mounting concerns over the coronavirus outbreak that has been spreading across countries.

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"We are delivering WWDC 2020 this June in an innovative way to millions of developers around the world, bringing the entire developer community together with a new experience," said Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. "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. We will be sharing all of the details in the weeks ahead," Apple said.

Apple is looking to make its online event a chance for developers to get early access to "the future of iOS, iPadOS, macOS, watchOS and tvOS" and also engage with Apple engineers.

The company will be sharing additional program information and details about what we might expect to see via emails from now till June and also on the Apple Developer app and the website.

Moving an event offline means a huge loss of revenue for the venue and the people involved. To make up for this, Apple has announced that it will commit $1 million to local San Jose organizations to "offset associated revenue".

WWDC 2020 is one of the biggest events in tech and it joins other big guns like Facebook's F8, Mobile World Congress, E3 2020, Game Developers Conference, SXSW, Google I/O, Microsoft Build etc that have either been cancelled entirely, or moved online or postponed.

Tech companies have also been moving their launches to online-only events.

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