Apple’s official e-store to be operational in India by Q3 2020: Report
Apple's official e-store will launch in the third quarter of this year, according to a TechCrunch report. Currently, Apple sells its products online through partnerships with e-commerce companies such as Flipkart, Amazon and Paytm Mall. For offline, Apple is also expected to open its retail store in India very soon.
Apple was earlier reported to start selling products online through its e-store in the first quarter of the year. The latest report suggests there's a delay in the proceedings. The report added that Apple's first physical store will be set up in Mumbai and may need a few more months before it becomes operational.
Apple's official e-store will come months after the Indian government relaxed Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) rules for several sectors including single brand retail.
"We love our customers in India and we're eager to serve them online and in-store with the same experience and care that Apple customers around the world enjoy. We appreciate the support and hard work by Prime Minister Modi and his team to make this possible and we look forward to one day welcoming customers to India's first Apple retail store. It will take us some time to get our plans underway and we'll have more to announce at a future date, Apple had said last year.
An official e-store will also help Apple better control prices of its products on third-party e-commerce platforms. The TechCrunch report points out Apple executives aren't very happy with the heavy discounts available on Amazon, Flipkart, and Paytm Mall on its key products such as iPhone and Macbook Air. The executives also noted that these discounts are primarily aimed at boosting GMV metrics of these e-commerce companies.
Apple has gradually improved its market share in India after a slump for a few quarters. A revival plan included deep discounts on its new and old products. Apple CEO Tim Cook on Wednesday revealed that the company had managed double-digits growth in emerging markets such as India. The growth was driven by strong demands for its iPhone X2, and iPhone 11 - a trend confirmed by recent reports from market research firms.
According to a Counterpoint Research, Apple grabbed 2% market share in India and registered a year-on-year growth of 41%.
"Additionally, 2019 saw the fastest rollout of Apple's new iPhones (11 series) in India, with aggressive pricing and a good channel strategy. In fact, the new series especially iPhone 11 was introduced at a lower price point than last year's iPhone XR. This has helped to gain share during the festive season and in its launch quarter in India," the report noted.