Apple is now making iPhone 11 in India: Piyush Goyal
A few weeks ago, a report suggested that Apple's contract manufacturer Foxconn is looking to expand the production of iPhones at its Chennai plant by investing up to $1 billion. Now, that project appears to have begun, as the Indian facility has started the assembly of iPhone 11, the top-of-the-line model from the Cupertino giant, for the first time. Here's more about it.
Notably, The Economic Times cited two industry executives to report that the iPhone 11 model is now being assembled in India by Foxconn. Soon, Piyush Goyal, India's Minister of Commerce and Industry, confirmed the development on Twitter, calling it a significant boost to the Make in India initiative led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Foxconn already manufactures iPhone Xr in India.
Significant boost to Make in India!— Piyush Goyal Office (@PiyushGoyalOffc) July 24, 2020
Apple has started manufacturing iPhone 11 in India, bringing a top-of-the-line model for the first time in the country.https://t.co/yjmKYeFCpL
While the development is significant, the question everyone has is whether this will make the iPhone 11 affordable. Technically, we think, that should be the case because making iPhone 11 in India will save Apple the 22% duty it has to pay to the Indian government for importing the handset from its China plant. It obviously adds to the final cost of the device.
According to the executives cited by ET, changes in pricing, if any, will show up at a later stage rather than immediately. This is because a number of iPhone 11 models still come from China. The device currently starts at Rs. 68,300 in India.
Now, Apple and Foxconn plan to increase the production of iPhone 11 and, perhaps, even export it to other countries. The Tim Cook-led company is also reportedly considering starting the production of the 2020 iPhone SE at its Wistron plant near Bengaluru. Wistron, to recall, has been using that facility to make older iPhone models - from the original SE to the iPhone 8.
Along with Wistron and Foxconn, Pegatron, which is Apple's second-largest assembler for iPhones, is also said to be working to set up a subsidiary to open its first plant in India.
The effort to expand the production of newer iPhones in India comes as part of Apple's bid to move out of China, which has been at a trade war with the US — and causing business disruptions. "There's a strong request from Apple to its clients to move part of the iPhone production out of China," a person familiar with the development told Reuters.