Technology giant Apple Inc. will soon start assembling iPhones in India, boosting the company’s chances of gaining a foothold in the fast-growing market, the Wall Street Journal reports.
Taiwanese contract manufacturer Wistron Corp. will probably start making iPhone 6 and 6S models in the next four to six weeks at its plant in Bangalore, an official of the southern state of Karnataka where the factory is located said.
The firm will add the SE, Apple’s cheapest iPhone model, to its assembly line in about three months, the official said.
Apple’s production foray in India comes as sales are cooling in China, its growth engine for years.
The move would enable the company to reduce the price of its smartphones in India, where majority of the phones sold cost less than US$150.
The iPhone SE, which now sells for as low as US$330 on retail, is still out of reach for most Indian consumers.
Making the phones in India would allow Apple to cut prices by at least US$100 as its import tariff bill comes down, the Journal quoted Faisal Kawoosa, an analyst at research firm CMR, as saying.
Smartphone shipments in India grew 18 percent last year, compared with 3 percent globally, the WSJ said, citing data from Counterpoint Research.
Apple is also negotiating with New Delhi to allow its component manufacturers to make parts in the country and export finished phones, the newspaper said, citing the state official and a senior federal government official at the trade ministry.
– Contact us at [email protected]