China to Chennai: Apple starts manufacturing iPhone 11 in India

Apple has started assembling its flagship iPhone 11 at the Foxconn plant near Chennai, India. This is the first time the tech giant will assembling a flagship device in the country. Retail sources tell CNBC-TV18 that iPhone 11 with ‘Assembled in India” tags are now available in stores. As of now, users will not see the drop in process (PRICES ) but it is believed that we might see this happen eventually as producing these devices locally will save Apple the company Apple 22 percent on import duty.

As of now, Apple has been making two handset models in the country – iPhone XR which is being assembled by Foxconn in Chennai and iPhone 7 assembled by Wistron in Bangalore. The original iPhone SE and iPhone 6s were assembled by Wistron, but those were discontinued in 2019.

Going forward, Apple may consider exporting the India-made iPhone 11s and we are yet to get a confirmation on that.

Experts believe that huge opportunities lie ahead for India to become a manufacturing and export hub for handsets owing to the Indian government’s push. After the launch of the PLI scheme in April, OEMs are planning to set up production bases in India.

It’s not just Apple, homegrown brand Lava is also planning to shift its handset production from China to India to leverage the PLI scheme. Apple is also planning to shift 20 percent smartphone production from China to India and this move by Apple is a step in that direction. In fact, Piyush Goyal tweeted calling this move a “Significant boost to Make in India!”

According to counterpoint, Apple has remained the leading brand in the ultra-premium segment, which is devices priced over Rs 45000 and this is driven by iPhone 11 shipments, though it lost some share to OnePlus in Q2.-CNBC TV18

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