Apple to start India manufacturing in coming months with iPhone SE: source

Fri Feb 17, 2017 1:24am EST
 
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By Sankalp Phartiyal

MUMBAI (Reuters) - Apple Inc will in the coming months start assembling its lower-priced iPhone SE models at a contract manufacturer's plant in the southern Indian technology hub of Bengaluru, an industry source with direct knowledge of the matter said on Friday.

Apple's Taiwanese manufacturing partner Wistron Corp is setting up a plant in Bengaluru to focus solely on assembling iPhones, a separate source told Reuters earlier this month.

Apple's move comes as it seeks to boost its share in the world's fastest growing major mobile market, where handsets far cheaper than Apple's iPhones dominate. It also comes as smartphone sales growth is slowing in Asia's other massive market, China.

To lower prices, Apple has been seeking to set up local production and has been in talks with the Indian federal government regarding issues such as tax concessions.

The industry source told Reuters the initial manufacturing of the iPhone SE model was not contingent on those concessions.

Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The Economic Times newspaper earlier on Friday reported Apple planned to initially assemble 300,000 to 400,000 iPhone SE handsets in India. The industry source told Reuters the numbers would be substantially lower to begin with.

The source also said it was too early to say what other phone models Apple would assemble at the Bengaluru plant.   Continued...

 
A man speaks on his mobile phone as he walks past an Apple iPhone SE advertisement billboard in a street in New Delhi, India, April 25, 2016. REUTERS/Anindito Mukherjee