Apple Inc plans to start manufacturing iPhone 14 in India about two months after the product's initial release in China, Bloomberg News reported Tuesday.
The company has been working with suppliers to ramp up production in India and shorten the lag in manufacturing new iPhones from the typical six to nine months for previous launches, the report said citing people familiar with the matter.
ET had reported earlier that Apple could be evaluating shipping its upcoming iPhone 14 from India, as the US smartphone company looks to mitigate geopolitical risks on supply efficiency by setting up production sites outside China.
While in the short term, India's iPhone capacities/shipments still have a considerable gap with China, it is an important milestone for Apple in building a non-Chinese iPhone production site.
The US-based company has been gradually ramping up production of iPhones in India. Currently, its devices are manufactured in India by three contract manufacturers — Foxconn (Hon Hai), Wistron and Pegatron.
The three Apple partners are part of the Indian government's production-linked incentive scheme for mobile manufacturing. They need to make products worth a minimum of Rs 8,000 crore each this year to get the incentives.
Apple has been working with suppliers to ramp up manufacturing in India and shorten the lag in production of the new iPhone from the typical six to nine months for previous launches, people familiar with the matter told Bloomberg.
Apple has long made most of its iPhones in China and has been seeking alternatives amid the Chinese government's clashes with the US and other factors including recent lockdowns to curb the spread of the virus.
Foxconn Technology reportedly studied the process of shipping components from China and assembling the iPhone 14 device at its plant outside Chennai, Tamil Nadu.
Apple and Foxconn ultimately determined a simultaneous start in India and China isn’t realistic this year, although it remains a long-term goal, said the people.
The first iPhone 14s from India are likely to be finished in late October or November, following the initial September release, they said. An ambitious target would be Diwali that begins on October 24, one person told the news agency.