Apple halts all device sales in Russia in response to invasion of Ukraine

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Samuel Axon

Apple has halted all sales of its products in Russia in response to the country’s invasion of Ukraine, the company announced this afternoon. Online sales stopped immediately, while the company says it stopped shipping products to Russian retail channels sometime in the past week.

Apple also made changes to some of its services in response to the invasion; State-controlled Russian media companies RT and Sputnik have both removed their apps from Apple’s app stores in all territories outside of Russia, and the company has stopped providing traffic and live incident data for Ukraine on Apple Maps “as a safety and precautionary measure.” for Ukraine citizens.” The Apple Pay service has also been “restricted” — the company hasn’t elaborated, but transactions are no longer supported by a number of Russian banks hit by sanctions.

In an internal email (via MacRumors), Apple CEO Tim Cook said the company is “donating to humanitarian relief efforts and providing assistance to the developing refugee crisis.” Apple would also match employee donations to “eligible organizations” 2 to 1.

Apple joins many other tech companies – including but not limited to Microsoft, Google and Meta – in delisting and deprioritizing Russian state-controlled media from its platforms. Microsoft has removed the RT and Sputnik apps from the Windows Store and restricted their presence on its Bing search engine, while YouTube has blocked RT and Sputnik content in Europe and demonstrated their content elsewhere. Meta shut down bot networks on Facebook and Instagram and provided tools to protect the accounts and personal information of Ukrainian and Russian citizens. The US and other countries have also blocked the export of chips, telecommunications equipment and other hardware to Russia as a result of the invasion of Ukraine.

“We will continue to assess the situation and are in touch with relevant governments about the actions we are taking,” Apple said in a statement.


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