Apple’s next-generation iPhone 15 has started production in Tamil Nadu, India. The decision represents a significant move toward narrowing the gap between Apple’s India operations and its primary manufacturing base in China.
Foxconn Technology Group, a renowned electronics contractor, is preparing its plant in Sriperumbudur to deliver iPhone 15 mere weeks after its Chinese counterparts start their shipments. This fast-paced strategy could potentially increase the volume of new iPhones coming from India.
The California-based tech giant seeks to mitigate risks surrounding its supply chain as trade relations between the U.S and China become less predictable.
Thus, diversifying its manufacturing base away from China is considered a part of a multiyear strategy.
The iPhone 15 and Apple’s Ambitious Goal
The delay in iPhone assembly between India and China, which previously lagged by as much as half a year, dramatically reduced last year. By March, Apple produced 7% of its iPhones in India.
The goal this year is to bring Indian production in line with Chinese, although some ambiguity remains whether suppliers will achieve this target.
The kicker here is the readiness of components, most of which are imported, and a smooth increase of production lines at Foxconn’s factory. This will determine the scale of iPhone 15 production in India.
This year’s iPhone 15 is anticipated to be Apple’s biggest update in three years. It’s set to include significant upgrades to the camera system, and the Pro models incorporating an improved 3-nanometer processor.
The success of this new generation of iPhones is crucial for Apple amidst reducing sales numbers recorded over the last three fiscal quarters.
Consequently, what will this mean to other Apple suppliers in India like the Pegatron Corp. and Wistron Corp., who are also equipping themselves to assemble iPhone 15? Only time will tell.
By rapidly expanding in India via its Taiwanese suppliers, Apple is potentially bolstering its operations and presence on new battlegrounds. As the fiscal year ended in March, Apple had tripled its iPhone production to more than $7 billion in India.
With Apple’s retail stores opening in April, the Indian market represents both a retail opportunity and a significant production base for the brand’s long-term goals.