Apple confirmed on Tuesday that it will soon begin manufacturing the iPhone 12 series in India, as the tech giant looks to capitalise on a record sales year in India in 2020.
“Apple is dedicated to making the best products and services in the world to delight our customers. iPhone 12 features a sleek flat-edge design and brings impressive new capabilities, including advanced computational photography, an expansive edge-to-edge Super Retina XDR display with OLED for a brighter, more immersive viewing experience, a new Ceramic Shield front cover, providing the biggest jump in durability ever on iPhone, and is powered by A14 Bionic, the fastest chip in a smartphone. We are proud to be starting production of iPhone 12 in India for our local customers,” the company said.
Apple started manufacturing iPhones in India in 2017 with iPhone SE. Today, Apple manufactures some of its most advanced iPhones in India including XR, iPhone 11, and now iPhone 12.
In the fiscal year ended March 31, 2020, Apple recorded revenue of INR 13,756 Cr, a 29% year-on-year (YoY) jump from revenue of INR 10,674 Cr for FY19. Apple sold over a million devices in India for the first time in a quarter between October and December 2020, the company announced, driven by sales of iPhone 11 and iPhone XR models.
Apple CEO Tim Cook said India was one of the fastest emerging markets for the company though more work needs to be done. “This is particularly the case in some of the emerging markets where we’re proud of how we’ve done… If you take India for example, we doubled our business last quarter compared to a year ago but our absolute level of business there is still quite low relative to the size of the opportunity.”
The Cupertino-based electronics behemoth is reportedly planning a major ‘Make in India’ expansion for local production of iPads and Macbooks, but along with other tech giants, has been lobbying the Indian government for incentives of up to INR 20,000 Cr. The new incentives would be for manufacturing devices such as tablets, laptops and servers, while India has already launched similar incentives for smartphones last year, which attracted Apple and others to set up manufacturing bases in India.
In October last year, mobile phone manufacturers such as Samsung, Foxconn Hon Hai, Rising Star, Wistron and Pegatron were among the 16 companies approved under the Indian government’s PLI (Production Linked Incentive) scheme for large scale electronics manufacturing in the country.
Among these, Foxconn Hon Hai, Wistron and Pegatron are contract manufacturers for Apple.
The PLI scheme, notified in April 2020 by the government to lure international companies for setting up manufacturing facilities in India, extends an incentive of 4% to 6% on incremental sales (over the base year) of goods under target segments that are manufactured in India. Eligible companies who are approved for the scheme will receive the incentive for a period of 5 years subsequent to the base year (FY20).