Apple plans to make the iPhone 12 and iPhone SE in India to improve competitiveness
Apple's supply chain partner Wistron is reportedly on a hiring spree in India in preparation for iPhone 12 production.
Wistron will likely hire 10,000 employees to work at the Narasapura plant in Bengaluru. Nearly 1,000 of its current employees are already said to be working on the iPhone 12 and manufacturing will begin in October.
The new models will apparently be ready to ship by mid-2021. It seems like these phones are meant for India and local production would serve as a means for Apple to bypass import duties that could be as high as 22 percent.
Xiaomi, Samsung, and Vivo currently dominate the Indian market
India is the world's second-largest smartphone market and although Apple dominates the premium category, its overall share stands at 1 percent. This is mainly because of the high prices of its phones and increasing competition from Chinese companies that offer a broad portfolio of products.
Apple has been making lower-priced smartphones in India since 2017. A while back, Foxconn started manufacturing the iPhone 11 in the country. Local production of the iPhone SE could also begin by the end of the year.
According to a report, Pegatron, which is the second-largest iPhone assembler, is also going to set up a plant in India.
Apple is also planning to open its first flagship store in the country in 2021.
Scaling up production in India would also help Apple reduce its reliance on China where most of its smartphones are currently built.
It is not known yet if the iPhone 12 models manufactured in India will also be sold in other countries.