Apple stores’ entry into India, in charts

The world’s largest technology firm, Apple, opened its first store in Mumbai on Tuesday. The company plans to open a second store in the capital on Thursday. The Mumbai store would be Apple’s 523rd store. Notwithstanding the euphoria around the openings, the tech giant faces stiff competition in India, where its iOS-based products have a market share of only 6%.

Of late, Apple has been eyeing India, not only as a market, but also as a base to manufacture its high-end mobile phones. The move is seen as part of Apple’s strategy to move its base out of China, where strict covid restrictions last year severely hampered production activities. Mint explores Apple’s footprints in India:

Apple’s market

With the addition of two stores in India, the total number of Apple stores will increase to 524. Most of these stores—272, or 52%—are in the US, followed by China, which has 44 (or 8%) of them. The rest of the stores are primarily located in Europe and other east Asian countries.

Popularity in India

Though popular, Apple’s expansion in India has been limited, primarily due to the high prices of its products. While in the US and China, the market share of iOS-based products is 57% and 24%, respectively, in India market share is limited to 6%. Nevertheless, despite the high cost, Apple has been able to carve a niche for its products in the country. Apple’s iPhone 13, with a price tag of 60,000+, featured among the best-selling smartphones in January 2023, in a list dominated by budget phones.

Chinese monopoly

The manufacturing hub for Apple products is concentrated in Eastern Asia, with China leading the way. The country is home to 150 of the 191 suppliers and contributes over 94% of the total Apple products. Several other countries in Eastern and Southeastern Asia are also part of Apple’s supply chain.

India expansion

A strict covid-induced lockdown last year and Beijing’s strained relations with Washington have prompted the US-based tech giant to look for manufacturing options outside China. In January this year, the state government of Karnataka announced it would allocate land to Foxconn, the largest manufacturer of Apple’s iPhones, to set up a factory in the state.

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