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Apple takes WWDC 2020 online-only due to coronavirus − physical events cancelled

Apple has announced that WWDC 2020 will be an online-only event, due to the spread of coronavirus.

WWDC, which stands for Worldwide Developers Conference, is always one of the biggest tech events of the year, but the shift from physical to virtual isn’t exactly unexpected.

Mobile World Congress, the biggest mobile event of the year, was cancelled last month because of fears around COVID-19, and several upcoming product launches and conferences from a range of brands have had to either be pushed back (Nokia), canned (E3 2020, Facebook F8) or made online-only (Build 2020, Google I/O 2020).

Today’s news has also been dominated by the postponement of a multitude of major sporting events, including the Australian Grand Prix and the Premier League.

“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’s otherwise curiously upbeat announcement added that it will “commit $1 million to local San Jose organisations” in order to “offset associated revenue loss as a result of WWDC 2020’s new online format”.

Related: Tim Cook quashes concerns coronavirus could delay the next iPhone

Specific dates for WWDC 2020 have not yet been revealed, but Apple has confirmed that the event will take place in June.

We tend to get our first clear look at Apple’s latest software features for its iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch and Mac lines at WWDC. Though a physical event is always held in California, Apple always live streams the action online too.

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