Apple closes in launching first retail store in India

“Apple Inc. has finalized a short list of locations for its first retail store in India, according to people familiar with the plans, as the company redoubles its efforts in the world’s fastest-growing smartphone market,” Saritha Rai reports for Bloomberg. “The iPhone giant has zeroed in on several upscale sites in Mumbai, and plans to make a final decision in the next few weeks, said the people, asking not to be named because the discussions are private. The vetted spots are comparable to iconic Apple locations on Fifth Avenue in New York, Regent Street in London or the Champs-Elysees in Paris, they said.”

“Apple has been prohibited from opening its own stores in the country because it doesn’t meet local sourcing requirements, but it’s shifting manufacturing into India and is in talks with the government about its retail expansion,” Rai reports. “Manufacturing in India will also allow the company to sidestep 20 percent tariffs on imported phones, making its devices more competitive.”

Rai reports, “The increase in local operations should expedite approval for a company-owned store when a new government takes over in India at the end of May or early June, said the people.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: It’s been a long, difficult slog, so far, but it looks like things are finally about to improve for Apple in India.

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Apple to meet with Indian government in Davos to discuss manufacturing in India – December 21, 2018
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Apple appoints Nokia veteran Ashish Chowdhary to lead India operations – November 13, 2018
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Apple ups iPhone prices in India as government hikes taxes on imported phones – December 18, 2017
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Indian Prime Minister Modi meets with Apple CEO Cook ahead of President Trump today – June 26, 2017
Apple broadens their iPhone attack in India, the world’s second biggest mobile market – June 22, 2017
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Apple again asks Indian government to allow sale of certified refurbished iPhones in India – February 6, 2017
Indian IT minister says Apple plans to make iPhones in Bengaluru – February 3, 2017
Apple nears deal to manufacture products in India – January 25, 2017
Apple is ready to make iPhones in India, for a price – January 20, 2017
India to consider Apple request for tax breaks and policy exemptions with ‘open mind’ – January 18, 2017
Apple is horse-trading mightily with India – January 4, 2017
Apple appoints veteran executive to revive sluggish India sales as supply issues hamper iPhone X launch – December 19, 2017


  1. The store will be crowded on opening day for the free T-shirts but that’s about it. If Apple sells a handful of products they should consider themselves lucky. India is the land of Android smartphones and the ratio is probably like 1000 Android smartphones for every one iPhone (well, something like that). I’d heard the iPhone has about a 1% market share in India. Absolutely no hope for Apple in India. Considering the number of theoretical potential customers, it’s a huge loss for Apple.

  2. It’s hard to sell premium smartphones to people who don’t even have bathrooms. People in India need bathrooms more than an Apple Store. It’s the reality.

    1. It’s about half the people in India that should have bathrooms but don’t – they literally take a dump wherever they are. Not because of need, but because they don’t want them. The government is trying to educate that having one in the house is not foul and disgusting, but that idea is completely foreign to many outside (and inside) the major cities. It’s a fascinating story of public health education.

      Much as educating folks about the advantages/security of the iPhone over Android. Not much different from breaking into the market controlled by Blackberry in 2007…

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