Apple’s CEO, Tim Cook’s positive remarks about the Asian market, need to be rephrased. Earlier, sanguine Cook used phrases like “very bullish” and “very optimistic” for the Asian market. However, given the weak sales of iPhone India in the first half of 2018 project a different scenario.
India is among the world’s fastest-growing smartphone market, but Apple is struggling to boost its iPhone sales here. This has led to the top brass to leave Apple India offices.
Weak Sales Cited as Reason for ‘Executive Exodus’ from Apple India
Among the executives who bade Apple adieu are national sales and distribution chief, the head of its commercial channels and mid-market business, and the head of telecom carrier sales.
On condition of anonymity, people close to the Apple’s India operations revealed that the company’s India sales team is now undergoing a restructuring.
Notably, Apple has started manufacturing iPhone models in India. But this move doesn’t have any positive impact on its sales figures as the company is producing older iPhones in India.
For the latest iOS devices, Apple has to pay high tariffs, which raise the prices of imported gadgets like the iPhone. Following higher prices, consumers are forced to select cheaper options provided by Xiaomi Corp. and Samsung Electronics Co.
In December 2017, Apple appointed Michel Coulomb as the head of Indian operations. This decision failed to gather momentum, as Coulomb has experience in carrier-led sales, and therefore, he and his team have been slow to develop business in the Indian market.
Given the rich diversity of India, Apple couldn’t understand the country and the sales team was groping in the dark to meet its targets.
Apple’s failure in India caused a domino effect in other Asian markets. For example, iPhone X was not warmly greeted by Chinese consumers.
In India, Apple enjoys a meager 2% market share; in 2017, Apple sold only 3.2 million iPhones. In the first half of 2018, Apple sold fewer than a million devices.
India is the second largest market for Apple, but the high price of iPhone models is the biggest stumbling block for the company to achieve its dream sales targets.
However, Cook is optimistic as young and aspiring Indians are quickly moving up the socio-economic ladder and would like to upgrade.
Apple has to fight this price battle to capture the Indian market. For this purpose, the company needs to manufacture the latest device. Indian consumers always welcome the best products, but not at exorbitant prices.
You may also refer:
- Why iPhones Are Costly In India Than Other Countries: Here are Some Valid Reasons
- iPhone Price Tag: Is it Worth?
- iPhone Manufacturer Foxconn Plans Apple Plant in India