The entry-level Apple iPhone SE is currently being manufactured in India, and it seems another device could soon join in. As per a new report, Apple could soon start manufacturing iPhone 6s models in the country.
A Reuters report claims that Apple’s Taiwanese contract manufacturer Wistron is close to sealing a land deal in Bengaluru. The firm is said to be investing around $157 million to develop the site, and a deal could be finalized in the next few weeks. Reportedly, some part of this land will be used to set up new assembly lines for Apple.
The report cites an unnamed source saying that Apple is “likely to start assembling its iPhone 6s models in India via Wistron soon, as it looks to cut costs and diversify its production base beyond greater China”. The report cites another source as saying, “The assembly of iPhone SE in India was a pilot to test waters and it is only logical the line would be expanded.”
It indeed seems logical for Apple to consider manufacturing the iPhone 6s in India. Those who find the iPhone SE too small and iPhone 7 and iPhone 8 series too expensive, prefer the decently priced iPhone 6s series. A quick look online shows that both the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus are easily available for less than Rs 40,000.
Another reason why Apple is looking at expanding its manufacturing portfolio in India is the government’s recent decision to hike import duties. Back in December, the Indian government raised import duties on a range of products from 10 percent to 15 percent. Compared to most of its rivals, Apple was really hit by this decision.
A couple of days after the announcement, Apple declared a price hike of around 3.5 percent across its entire portfolio. Only the made-in-India iPhone SE prices remained untouched.
This move comes amidst Apple posting its slowest-ever growth in a quarter in India. Soon after, Apple India’s sales head Sanjay Kaul quit. He will be replaced by Apple veteran Michel Coulomb, who’s had stints in South Asia, Middle East, Turkey and Africa.