Apple’s fading India dream
Ultra-premium iPhones alone will not work
Is Apple giving up on India, allowing a free run to Chinese handset companies? It certainly looks that way at first sight. This week, in his traditional keynote speech, Apple CEO Tim Cook launched the newest versions of the company’s flagship product, the iPhone. The highlight was the iPhone X, with various top-of-the-line features such as facial recognition and a bezel-less screen. It is priced at $1,000 in the US market. This means that, in India, it might cost close to, or even over, ~1 lakh. Alongside the iPhone X, two other iPhones were announced, which will be regular upgrades of the current flagships, the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus. In the US they will be more expensive than their predecessors, suggesting that they may retail at only ~25,000 or ~30,000 less than the iPhone X in India, making them again the most expensive phones in the Indian market.
Meanwhile, Chinese phone companies are pricing phones with equivalent features at a fraction of the price. Some of these phones even come in boxes with “Make in India” written on the top, along with the campaign’s trademark lion. Apple has a negligible share in the