Taiwan-based Foxconn, the contract manufacturing partner of Apple has started to assemble the latest iPhone units starting with the iPhone 11 at its Chennai plant in India. Reportedly the small batch of iPhone 11’s manufactured at the plat has been already shipped to retail stores.
Currently, the production of the new iPhone 11 is limited but the company plans to scale up its production in India and it also displays Apple’s further commitment to India.
Taiwan-based Wistron is the first contract manufacturing partner of Apple to start assembling older iPhone models in India starting in 2017. Wistron has assembled older iPhone SE, iPhone 6s, and iPhone 7 models previously and now the company is assembling the iPhone XR units in its Bengaluru plant.
Ravi Shankar Prasad, Minister of Electronics and Information Technology tweeted that Apple had begun assembling iPhone 11 models in India.
Assembling in India allows smartphone vendors to avoid about 20% import duty that the government of India levies on imported electronics products including smartphones.
Apple, Xiaomi, Vivo, Samsung, Oppo, OnePlus, and a range of other smartphone companies have signed deals with contract manufacturers across India in recent years to produce most of their smartphones in India.
Xiaomi that leads the smartphone market since late 2018 has said that each and every smartphone it sells in India is produced in India.
Apple has bigger plans to keep its commitment to India and the company has been exploring ways to scale up its production in India. Apple also plans to open its first brick-and-mortar retail store next year in the country
According to Bloomberg Pegatron, another Apple assembly partner also plans to set up a local subsidiary in India and begin operations in the country.
Foxconn has also announced to invest $1 billion to expand its operations in India.
Currently, Apple has just a 1% market share in India but the company hopes to expand its presence with the launch of iPhone SE (2020) the mid-range iPhone model that offers many features as its flagship models.