Why Apple Fails in India? Why iPhones are Expensive in India?

Apple in India

Apple sells millions of iPhones every year. In the last quarter of 2018, the company reported 47 million units sold worldwide. India has been one of the hardest countries to crack for Apple. India is a very price-sensitive market, where people pay a lot of attention to what value they are getting out of the price that they are paying. The Indian consumers think about the features from another phone at a lower price. This makes it tougher to sell something for Apple at a much higher price.

Samsung and Xiaomi have the majority of smartphone sales in India. Samsung and Xiaomi have 22 percent and 27 percent of market share in India respectively. Apple has about 1 percent of India’s smartphone market share. Most of the smartphones in India are below $200. Samsung announced its Galaxy M Series budget smartphones to attract the Indian market.

iPhones have a specific disadvantage in the India market because of the local regulation. There is a very high import duty on the phones that are not manufactured locally in India. So for most of the big players like Xiaomi and Samsung are manufacturing locally. Samsung has been manufacturing phones in India since 2007. The Chinese phone makers Xiaomi and Oppo have also invested millions of dollars in the country.

Apple already manufactures its lower-cost iPhone SE and iPhone 6s models locally, through a partnership with Wistron. According to rumors, Apple may start manufacturing the iPhone X series in southern India. Apple Pay is not available in India. Similar payment services Samsung Pay and Google Pay have already been rolled out.

The other challenge for Apple in India is that it cannot have its Apple stores because of some regulatory issues. In order to have a larger presence in the market, Apple has to have partnerships with many resellers. Most of the Indians prefer to buy budget phones like the OnePlus which offers similar features at a very low price than iPhone.

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