Prime Minister Narendra Modi has asked Tim Cook when they met earlier this year, as to whether Apple will make iPhones in India, but the Apple chief executive officer was reluctant to make a commitment on the issue.
Seems like we have got the answer for Apple has sounded out one of its largest contract manufacturing partners, Foxconn Technology Group, to look at the possibility of making the iPhone in India in the next two to three years.
Local manufacturing would allow Apple to bring products to market quicker besides making them cheaper for Indian consumers and turning the country into an export hub. No doubt this would require creating a vast and complex supply chain.
On his first visit to the country in May, Cook and Modi are said to have discussed manufacturing and retailing in India. Cook announced the setting up of an app development unit in Bengaluru and opened adevelopment centre for Apple Maps in Hyderabad, with an investment of $25 million.
Apple wants to open wholly owned stores in the country, which Cook sees as integral to winning customers by setting new service standards.
Foxconn may take two to three years to begin making iPhones locally, the first step being assembling them in India. No timeline has been discussed.
By Baishakhi Dutta