With Apple accelerating its diversification plans for manufacturing of hardware devices, the Cupertino-giant has now, for the first time, started manufacturing its latest iPhone model in India. The iPhone 14, launched a few weeks back, is now also being manufactured in India, Apple said on Monday.
While this is a part of Apple’s plans to diversify its manufacturing supply chains from China & Taiwan to other locations, the pace at which it has happened, is noteworthy. Till now, Apple was only manufacturing its older models in India, with iPhone 14 being the first to be manufactured right at the time of its launch. It is learned that some of these models will also be exported, apart from being made for domestic consumption.
Apple had started manufacturing iPhones in India in 2017.
Though the almost near-identical nature of the iPhone 14 models with previous generation iPhone 13 helps in accelerating this process. iPhone 13 was already being manufactured in India, by Apple’s manufacturing partner Foxconn. Foxconn is manufacturing the device in the Sriperumbudur facility near Chennai.
Apple’s plans are aggressive, when it comes to turning to India for manufacturing of iPhones. JP Morgan, in a recent report, had stated that Apple plans to shift as much as 25% of the global iPhone production to India, as it looks to cut down reliance on China. COVID-19 and the catastrophe that ensued for the global economy, woke up almost every major American corporation, to the perils of relying extensively on China for electronic supply chain.
“India’s iPhone supply chain has historically supplied only legacy models. Interestingly, Apple has requested that EMS vendors manufacture iPhone 14/14 Plus models in India in 4Q22, within two to three months of the start of production in Mainland China. The much shorter interval implies the increasing importance of India production and likely higher iPhone allocations to India manufacturing in the future,” the report added.
India has increasingly dished out incentives and policies to establish the country as a global semiconductor and electronics manufacturing hub. In fact, the implementation of such policies has been swift too, with as much as $6Bn in incentives already sanctioned to a slew of foreign manufacturers, all of whom will tie-up with an Indian manufacturer to set up electronics and semiconductor plants.
What remains to be seen though, is whether locally manufactured iPhones cost any less than their present Indian price. India has some of the most expensive iPhone pricing in the world, with costs as much as 20-30% higher than in the US.