Two decades after entering India, Apple is gearing up to launch its first set of retail stores in the populous South Asian nation, signaling the tech giant’s growing interest in the market.
Apple said on Tuesday it plans to open Apple BKC in Mumbai on April 18 and Apple Saket in Delhi on April 20. The iPhone-maker’s first retail stores in India have been long-anticipated, but the limited market for high-end smartphones and laptops in the country has tempered Apple’s expansion efforts.
Despite being the world’s second-largest internet market, the majority of smartphones sold in India are priced below $250. While India accounts for a small portion of Apple’s overall revenue, the iPhone-maker has expressed optimism about the nation’s potential for growth.
Apple said that the new retail locations “mark a significant expansion in India that will offer great new ways to browse, discover, and buy Apple products with exceptional service and experiences for customers.”
In preparation for the store openings, Apple has been actively recruiting employees in recent months, according to growing job postings. The company, which launched its Indian online store in 2020, had initially planned to open its first retail location in 2021, but the COVID-19 pandemic forced a delay.
Apple is also working to turn India into a key global hardware manufacturing hub, thanks in part to the incentives New Delhi is offering to manufacturers to expand their presence in the country.
The company’s contract manufacturing partners, Foxconn and Wistron, have increased local assembly of iPhones and other Apple devices in recent quarters. According to a report by JP Morgan analysts last year, Apple is expected to expand its manufacturing capacity in India to produce 25% of all iPhones by 2025.