India's first Apple retail store soon to launch in Mumbai

Updated: May 09, 2019, 15:38 IST | mid-day online correspondent

India to get its first ever Apple retail store in Mumbai. This initiative comes as Apple is trying to establish its presence in the world's fastest-growing smartphone market

India's first Apple retail store soon to launch in Mumbai
Representational image

India to get its first Apple Inc retail store in Mumbai. The company has finalised a list of locations for its retail store out of which Mumbai is one of them. Reportedly, the iPhone-maker has narrowed down on several upscale sites in the economic hub of the country. The initiative comes as the tech giant is trying to establish its foot in the world's fastest-growing smartphone market.

The Cupertino-based company is finalising on its decision in the next few weeks. The spots finalised by the company are comparable to the iconic Fifth Avenue location in New York, the Champs-Elysees in Paris and the Regent Street store in London. Apple has been banned from opening its own retail stores in India as it does not meet the local sourcing requirements. However, the company has decided to shift its manufacturing units to India and is in talks with the government regarding its retail expansion in the country.

According to Business Today, Apple, with its expensive products, has struggled to set foot and establish itself in India, where customers are more inclined towards affordable products like Android-based smartphones - Vivo and Xiaomi. Manufacturing in India will also help Apple with 20 per cent tariffs on their imported phones.

Tim Cook after the company's earnings report last week said, "India is a very important market in the long term. It's a challenging market in the short term, but we're learning a lot. We plan on going in there with sort of all of our might."

Research firm Canalys, separately estimated that Apple's shipments to India declined by more than 75 per cent in the first quarter of 2019. Apple only owns about 1 per cent of the country's smartphone market. Apple announced sizeable discounts on its latest iPhone XR in the country by offering a cut of Rs 17,000, bringing the price to Rs 59,000.

Recent highlights on Apple

A teenager based in New York sued Apple for USD 1 billion, over a false arrest he says, took place because of what he believes to be Apple's facial recognition system. The complainant, Ousmane Bah, who was arrested at his home in November last year, alleges that the warrant he was served included someone else's photo, the Washington Post reported. The lawsuit also claims that a detective with the New York Police Department concluded that the thief caught by a store surveillance camera "looked nothing like" Bah. It further cites the detective to say that Apple uses facial recognition software to identify shoplifters.

Apple is reportedly spending over $500 million to build its own stable of "Arcade" gaming service. The iPhone-maker announced its first-ever game subscription service called Apple Arcade in March that would feature over 100 new and exclusive games, including original releases from renowned creators like Hironobu Sakaguchi, Ken Wong and Will Wright. "Apple is spending 'hundreds of millions' of dollars, 'likely' over $500 million in total, to secure games for the subscription offering. It's reportedly spending 'several' million dollars per game, and is offering perks if developers grant temporary exclusives that keep titles off Android or even console subscriptions like the Xbox Game Pass," the Financial Times reported.

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