Apple will start assembling smartphones in India from next month. To get the thingsrolling, the company will start the ‘trial assembly’ of iPhones sometime in May at its Bengaluru facility which is run by Wistron.
The report comes from Economic Times which claims that Apple officials have confirmed to start the first phase of production next month. If you are not aware, Wistron is Apple’s original design manufacturer who will operate Apple’s first facility set up in Peenya, West Bengaluru. There is no official confirmation from Apple as to which iPhone will be the first one one to go in the production but recent rumours claimed that it could be iPhones 6 and 6s instead of iPhone SE.
To recall, Apple had recently sought additional tax sops over and above what has been provided under the Make in India guidelines. To brief it out, Apple sought tax exemptions on the procurement of components for assembling and repair units for a tenure of 15 years which Nirmala Sitharaman (Union Minister of Commerce and Industry) denied claiming it to be not feasible and fair to other handset manufacturers in India which have been following the norm without any extra privileges. Currently, smartphone manufacturers under Make-in-India campaign enjoy Modified Special Incentive Package Scheme (MSIPS) and the Electronics Development Fund (EDF) which includes a bunch of benefits.
With every update, Apple’s plan to manufacture in India is one step closer to reality. Apple manufacturing iPhones in India will surely result in a dip in pricing even without any special tax exemptions. The current customs duty imposed on smartphones is about 12.5 percent which, if removed, will dip the price by Rs 10,000. Also, we can expect Apple to start selling Make-in-India iPhones sometime by end of this year.