Apple is said to be planning an increase in the amount of iPhone models produced in India according to Reuters, with reports suggesting high-end devices such as ones from the iPhone X family could be manufactured in the country at Foxconn’s plant in Sriperumbudur in the southern state of Tamil Nadu.
Since iPhone manufacturing began in the country in 2017, India has been responsible solely for production of the iPhone SE and iPhone 6, devices that remain popular in the country.
Within the report shared by Reuters, sources suggest the expansion of high-end iPhone assembly outside of China could also be an attempt to “limit the impact” of a trade war between the United States and China:
For Apple, widening assembly beyond China is critical to mitigate the risks of the Sino-U.S. trade war. Foxconn, the world’s biggest electronics contract manufacturer, is considering setting up a factory in Vietnam, Vietnamese state media reported this month. If that goes ahead, it will be one of the biggest recent steps by a major company to secure an additional production base outside of China. – Foxconn has previously admitted the China-U.S. trade spat was its biggest challenge and that its senior executives were making plans to counter the impact. “Widening iPhone manufacturing in India through Foxconn will allow Apple to hedge the risk of any new U.S. trade policies,” said Navkendar Singh, an associate research director at International Data Corporation.
A firm date hasn’t been set for when increased iPhone production will start in the country, nor has Apple confirmed if the reports are truthful, but given that some devices are already being manufactured in India it wouldn’t be so hard for Apple or its production partners to expand the range of handsets produced in the country, thus avoiding the possible increase in import tariffs.