Apple is reportedly planning to start manufacturing its iPhones in India, and — right on cue — a new report claims that Apple supplier Wistron has applied for fast-tracked approval to expand its factory in the Indian city of Bengaluru.
“Wistron has approached us to expedite certain clearances with regards to the augmentation and expansion of its existing unit,” said a high-ranking regional government official, who declined to be identified.
Wistron was recently added as Apple’s third manufacturer for the 2017-era iPhone 8, according to another report. The company previously gained experience as an Apple supplier on secondary iPhone handsets such as the iPhone 5s and, reportedly, the iPhone SE.
While it’s still conjecture whether or not Apple will move the majority of its manufacturing from China to India, today’s news does add another piece of evidence suggesting this could be the case. It follows on from previous reports suggesting that both Foxconn and Pegatron — both of whom have fielded the majority of iPhone orders over the past few years — are also looking to expand in India.
Manufacturing in India has been an increasingly popular topic as of late. The idea is that it could be a net positive for both Apple and India: the former because it could help mitigate the accelerating wage inflation in China where the majority of Apple’s devices are made, and the latter because foreign investment in India will help create jobs and boost the economy.
Last week we reported that Apple is busy attempting to secure favorable financial incentives in the country as part of the deal to shift its manufacturing there.
It is also said to be asking the country’s Department of Revenue and Department of Electronics and Information Technology to exempt Apple from rules stating that manufacturers have print detailed product information onto their devices — thereby potentially cluttering Apple’s minimalist design.
Tim Cook visited India for the first time last year, during which time he met with Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Apple has also announced its plans to invest $25 million in a new office complex in India, while additionally planning to open a new office in Indian tech hub Hyderabad that will focus on improving Apple Maps.
Source: Indian Express