Apple’s strategy for iPhones in India is taking a new turn, as Apple is understanding the Indian market better. Surprisingly, this new Apple India iPhone Strategy has to do a lot with older models of iPhone, rather than the latest.
Apple doesn’t command a lot of the smartphone market in India. At barely 3% of the market share, Apple is one of the less powerful brands (speaking in terms of the sheer number of customers). And out of this small share, more than 50% of their sales from the older iPhones. The iPhone 5s, in fact, has been Apple’s most successful phone in India so far.
This is in total contrast to what happens in the US. Over there, the latest iPhone always enjoys a lion’s share of the sales. The reason that doesn’t happen in India is the of price bracket. Apple’s latest iPhones usually cost much more than most laptops and nearly as much as small cars!
Apple is working on correcting this strategy of pricing, and it’s applying that to its older models.
Working mostly in conjuncture with online retailers like Amazon and Flipkart, Apple is slashing the prices of its older models by huge chunks. This new India iPhone strategy is aimed at making the iPhone more accessible to the highly price-sensitive customers in India.
It also works well with Apple’s desire to penetrate the Tier-II cities where a bulk of the mid-range smartphone market share resides. And that demand is only going to rise as internet penetration increases in rural and semi-urban India. As ET notes:
“As sales drop in China, Apple needs another big market to sustain growth and its $800 billion market value, and Counterpoint estimates that Indians will buy more than a billion smartphones in the next five years.”
So, will this new India iPhone Strategy work?
Well, so far, it seems to be doing its job. iPhones that are as old as even 3-4 years are still seeing a healthy demand. Which is a great achievement as most smartphones lose market relevance within 8-10 months of their launch.
But how long can Apple sustain this new India iPhone strategy? That’s the question!!