Apple has once again delayed its official return to standard attendance at its corporate campuses in Cupertino. It was previously set at February 1st 2022, but now has been pushed back to an unspecified time as the spread of the Omicron Covid-19 variant takes hold around the world.

This is now the fourth time that Apple has had to revise its schedule for bringing employees back to the office.

Alongside the announcement about the indefinite delay on return to work, Bloomberg reports Apple is giving employees $1000 bonuses to spend on home office gear, and Apple will give a month heads-up when a new date is determined.

Earlier this year, Apple had originally hoped to kickstart its new hybrid office/home plan in June 2021. Apple said it expected workers to come in to the office for three out of five days of the week, with flexibility to work from home on Wednesdays and Fridays.

However, that date has now been pushed back many times as the threat of COVID perseveres, from June to September, to October, to January, to February and this time the company has declined to pinpoint a new exact date.

Meanwhile, Apple employees have vocally pushed back against Apple’s announced plans. A significant proportion of Apple’s workforce are disappointed that Apple is not transitioning to a more ‘modern’ work-from-home policy long term, in line with some other tech companies like Twitter. Apple CEO Tim Cook has said it will trial the hybrid model for 2022 and then reevaluate for the long-term.

Although the overarching company policy makes the headlines, the truth is many divisions of Apple have been back in the office on and off for more than a year. Specifically, hardware engineering groups returned to Apple Park quite early as they needed access to the machinery and campus facilities in order to get their job done. On the flip side, some managers have sorted permanent work-from-home arrangements for their teams. However, most employees in the software divisions are expected to respect the three-days-in-office policy.

Earlier today, Apple closed a handful of retail stores citing the renewed spread of COVID-19.

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Benjamin Mayo

Benjamin develops iOS apps professionally and covers Apple news and rumors for 9to5Mac. Listen to Benjamin, every week, on the Happy Hour podcast. Check out his personal blog. Message Benjamin over email or Twitter.