The ‘Ache Din’ for India in terms of manufacturing is elevating its standards. Recently, it has been reported that Apple has chosen India for full-scale manufacturing of its iPhone XR, which has now started at Foxconn’s plant near Chennai.
This move to produce iPhone in India could turn out to be in extreme goodwill for India, considering the local taxes. This could also benefit India in terms of foreign investments in the country.
Apple Starts Manufacturing in Chennai
Apple happens to assemble most of its iPhone in China. Lately, due to tainted trade relations between US and China, Apple has decided to gradually shift its manufacturing units to other countries. This will include assembly of the latest flagship iPhones in sync with worldwide release schedules and help as a de-risking strategy.
Apple has just started its commercial production of the iPhone XR locally at the Foxconn facility near Chennai after undertaking trials for several weeks. Reports have also come in that after this model is completed, the manufacturing of iPhone 11 series will also start at this facility in Chennai.
No doubt, this manufacture will demand for a higher level of technical skill. Apple will export the devices to other markets after having tested the waters with the export of iPhone 6s and 7 models to Europe in the past few months.
Apple now has two of its big global contract manufacturers operating in India. Before Foxconn, Taiwan’s Wistron had started iPhone assembly in India near Bengaluru in 2017 but this was limited to older models.
How is This Benefiting India
The Foxconn plant in Chennai is Apple’s biggest manufacturing unit in India. It is known to have the capability to manufacture the top iPhone models that sell for more than Rs 1 lakh each. Earlier, Foxconn Technology Group founder Terry Gou had said the iPhone will go into mass production in India this year and will include newer models.
The government is heavily pushing Apple to manufacture its entire line-up of smartphones in India, especially the newer ones, since this would help the Make in India initiative win over more investors.
The company is also preparing to set up company-owned retail stores and start direct online sales in India after the government relaxed foreign direct investment (FDI) norms for single-brand retail in August.
Recently, Apple has also planned to invest INR $140 million in India to set up its first online retail platform and open three company-owned stores across major cities in the next two to three years.
Apple has around 2% share of the overall Indian smartphone market, while in the premium segment it competes aggressively against Samsung and China’s OnePlus.