Apple will open its first Apple Online Store for the India market next month, according to a new report by Bloomberg.
The online store will reportedly be up and running for the Dussehra through Diwali holiday season, which kicks off October 25 and runs through November 14. It comes as Apple is upping its focus on the India market.
Apple is launching its Apple Online Store in India as the country loosens its strict laws against foreign direct retail. Those laws were loosened last year, but the coronavirus pandemic made Apple push back its plans to open an online portal.
Apple opened its first online store in the U.S. back in 1997. According to legend, Steve Jobs was motivated to make a kickass online experience to get back at Michael Dell, the Dell CEO who publicly badmouthed Apple. By creating a top-of-the-line online experience, Jobs beat Dell at his own game.
Apple’s focus on India
The Apple Online Store is just one step Apple is taking to increase its retail focus on India. The company is also reported to be opening its first brick-and-mortar Apple Store in India some time in 2020. This will be located in Mumbai. Apple will reportedly open a second store in technology hub Bangalore.
Apple manufacturers are also producing more and more handsets in India, targeted at the local market. It is reportedly manufacturing its 2020 iPhone SE and iPhone 11 in India, made by Foxconn and Wistron. Another Apple assembler, Pegatron, is also planning to set up shop in India.
It’s no surprise that Apple would want to pursue India as a market. With 1.3 billion people, it’s on the verge of overtaking China as the world’s most populous nation. But it has also been a difficult market for Apple. Even iPhones like the $399 iPhone SE are more than double the price most people spend on phones in a country where the average annual income is $1,892. Then again, when you’ve got such a massive population, even increasing market share a couple of percentage points can bring in big bucks.