With Apple producing iPhones in India, they should see a push in retail where they have struggled because of high prices.
Earlier this month, it was reported that sources familiar with Foxconn’s plans stated that Apple will begin producing the iPhone X series of handsets in India. Now, Foxconn Technology Group chairman Terry Gou has stated that the company will begin mass producing Apple’s iPhone in India, a shift from China which has been producing the handsets all this while.
Reports state that Gou has been invited by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to India as Foxconn plans to expand in the country. For a few years, Apple’s iPhone SE has been produced in India and the company plans to produce more recent models in their Bangalore plant. A report by Bloomberg stated that Foxconn will plan a trial run of building its latest iPhone models in India before it commences full-scale assembly at its factory outside the city of Chennai.
India has overtaken China as the fastest smartphone market in the world with Apple losing significant ground to the likes of Huawei and Xiaomi. Apple has not done exceedingly well in India as its prices have held it back. With production shifting to India, Apple can avoid the 20 per cent import duties and this will help the Cupertino-based smartphone giant gain significant traction in the country.
At an event in Taiwan, Gou stated, “In the future, we will play a very important role in India’s smartphone industry. We have moved our production lines there.”
On Monday, Gou stated that he plans to step back from daily operations and focus on the broader strategy. Louis Woo, special assistant to Gou said that he was not stepping down or relinquishing his chairmanship.
As of yet, it’s not clear as to how Apple’s plans in India will affect its China operations as the latter has been the brand’s most important manufacturing base for years. Also, China is home to Foxconn and its manufacturing partners.
Reports state that the Indian assembly line of Foxconn would potentially serve local and export markets by the time Apple announces its next iPhone models later n this year. Foxconn is said to invest USD 300 million to set up for Apple and it is believed the investments will increase as the capacity ramps up.
By producing iPhones locally in India will definitely benefit Apple and its retail push in India. Apple needs to meet the 30 per cent local sourcing in order to open its official stores in India. Right now, iPhones in India are sold through Apple retail partners and not their official stores.