In an interesting turn of events, Apple is reportedly planning to manufacture some of its high-end iPhones in India. Yes, you read that right. Apple’s iPhone XS and the iPhone XR will be manufactured by Foxconn in India. But that’s not all. These devices are also likely to be available for purchase from just next month. In addition, because these devices would be produced in India, there’s also the possibility that the prices of these devices might drop in the country. But there’s a catch.
Why would Apple do this?
If Apple and Foxconn do decide to manufacture the iPhone XS and XR in India, that would essentially save a sizeable chunk of import duties in India. In turn, the existing price of the iPhone XS and iPhone XR might drop further.
According to Reuters, “Local production will give Apple the leeway to play with the margins of their distributors and indirectly price their phones lower”. This was a statement by Rushabh Doshi, who is a research director at Canalys.
It’s no surprise that Apple devices are highly valued in India. But the problem is in their premium pricing. This, in turn, limits the market share of Apple and other brands such as OnePlus, Xiaomi and Samsung take the lion’s portion of the market.
But there’s a catch
Before you go planning to buy your next iPhone from India, there’s something you should know. There’s no official confirmation by either Apple nor Foxconn that this would indeed carry on. In case you didn’t know, Wistron Corporation already manufactures the iPhone SE, iPhone 6S and iPhone 7 in Bengaluru.
In addition, there are also factors such as India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s attempt to position India as a hub for smartphone manufacturing. India is South Asia’s 3rd largest economy and also gives companies such as Apple and Foxconn a market with over one billion wireless connections and cheap labor as well.
Further, apart from fulfilling the local demand needs, companies such as Apple could also strategically utilize India as an export hub. This is particularly relevant to the trade war between the US and China. Apple also took a blow to iPhone sales in China due to the very same US-China trade war.
Would there be anything different in the Indian iPhone?
We don’t really know. Apart from the “Assembled in India” tag at the bottom of the iPhone, it’s not likely that the Apple iPhone XS and the iPhone XR would have anything different about them. There won’t be any bloatware either so people can rest assured that if and when they do buy an iPhone assembled in India, it will be the same as buying it from anywhere else with no compromise in quality and user experience.
Would you buy an iPhone XS or iPhone XR assembled in India? We would love to hear your thoughts.