Apple has reportedly started selling India-assembled iPhone XR units as it looks to increase its presence in the world’s second-largest smartphone market where it continues to remain a marginal player with barely 1 percent marketshare. That’s according to a new report from The Wall Street Journal (WSJ), which confirms recent reports that claimed the devices are being assembled at the company’s factory in Sriperumbudur, Tamil Nadu.
Apple has already been assembling its older iPhone 6S and iPhone 7 models in India through both Foxconn and Wistron, but this is the first time that a relatively high-end X-series device is being made in India. As can be seen from the image tweeted on Monday by WSJ journalist, Newley Purnell (@newley), the packaging on the India-assembled iPhones will be printed with “Designed by Apple in California, Assembled in India”.
Unfortunately for would-be iPhone XR buyers in India, Apple is not planning to reduce the price of the device in the country, and will reportedly pocket the 20-odd percent it will save in import duty by making these devices locally. That would be consistent with the company’s earlier decision of not reducing the prices of the iPhone 6S in spite of making them in India for more than a year.
While Tim Cook keeps talking about India being a big area of focus for Apple, the company’s decision of pricing its iPhones, iPads and Macs at a significant premium over their US pricing belies those assertions. And even though the company is also planning to open its first company-owned retail outlet in India at the Maker Maxity mall in Mumbai, that’s unlikely to change anything for the company unless it does something about its atrocious pricing strategy in the country.