Apple moves one step closer to a comeback in India with plans for local high-end iPhone production

Apple moves one step closer to a comeback in India with plans for local high-end iPhone production
Apple is in a bit of a pickle following years and years of steady growth in both smartphone shipments and overall revenue. The Cupertino-based tech giant is reportedly exploring various ways to avoid further drops in sales numbers, including a switch to an all-OLED iPhone lineup and a tardy but welcome USB-C adoption.

Of course, the company may need to revise its business strategy in a more significant way than just upgrading this iPhone feature and replacing that port if it wants to regain its relevance in crucial markets like China or India.

While the former remains a tricky land to conquer with no end in sight for a highly publicized recent trade war, Apple’s market share in India would no doubt be boosted by reducing regional iPhone prices.

The easiest way to do that without lowering profit margins is to produce more iPhones locally, which is precisely what Apple wants to do... eventually, according to a new Wall Street Journal report essentially corroborating claims made by Reuters sources last month.

All these “people familiar with the matter” expect Foxconn to start manufacturing high-end iPhones in India sometime in the near future, although plans are not awfully specific yet. The Taiwan-based company, which is Apple’s most valued assembly partner as well as the world’s largest contract electronics manufacturer, is still in the inquiry phase of this arguably massive undertaking, with senior executives planning a visit next month to discuss details with local government officials.

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India has been very open to attracting foreign investments this way over the past few years, embracing among others a different Apple manufacturing ally for iPhone SE and 6S production.

This time, the goal is to move a presumably small piece of the production of “higher end, pricier iPhones” from China to India, which would kill two birds with one stone for Apple. The company could become less vulnerable to mounting tensions between American and Chinese governments while at the same time be able to better compete with budget-friendly flagships from brands like OnePlus in the enormous Indian market.

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