New Delhi, Apple enthusiasts in India will be able to buy the latest iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X, at a price starting from Rs 64,000 within days of availability of the smartphones in the US and other markets. The new lineup, announced late last night in the US, will compete with flagship devices from the stables of Samsung, LG and other players in India.
The iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus will be available in 64GB and 256GB variants, priced at Rs 64,000. These will be available at Apple authorised resellers from September 29, Apple India said in a statement.
The iPhone X, which is being launched to mark the 10th anniversary of the launch of the first iPhone, includes features like face recognition and super retina display. To be available from November 3 in 64GB and 256GB variants, the iPhone X will be priced Rs 89,000 onwards.
The Mac and iPad maker has sold over 1.2 billion iPhones till date. Apple — the world’s second largest handset maker — is bullish and optimistic about India, a key growth market where it is bringing all of its “energies” to expand footprint. During the company’s earnings call last month, CEO Tim Cook had said Apple is investing in India. It has set up an app accelerator centre in India and is working with channel partners and expanding its go-to-market roadmap in the country.
It has also started producing the iPhone SE in India during the June quarter. According to Counterpoint Research, Apple had a 2.3 per cent market share (in volume terms), ranking at the 11th spot in the hyper-competitive Indian smartphone market. Its global rival, Samsung ranked numero uno in India with 24 per cent share.
However, in value terms, Apple was at the fifth spot with 10 per cent share of the Indian smartphone market in the June 2017 quarter. “With iPhone X Apple has added a new “Premium plus” category where it can target its loyal users to upgrade to a
“premium plus ” category while the older generation iPhone users -iPhone 5 or 6 can still upgrade to iPhone 7 or 8 series,” Counterpoint Research Associate Director Tarun Pathak told PTI.
He added that in India, he expects initial sales to be high with Apple user base upgrading to new devices, irrespective of pricing or value addition from the previous gen iPhone. “However, Apple will have task to cut out to acquire Android users in premium segment when both S8 and Note 8 likely to give strong competition to Apple,” he said.
Samsung’s Note 8 will be available in the Indian market from September 21, priced at Rs 67,900. Samsung is betting big on Note 8 to consolidate its position in the Indian premium smartphone market (Rs 30,000 and above), where it claims to have 68 per cent share (GfK data).
Pathak noted that Apple now has its highest ever line of SKUs – 8 models in its official line up excluding the iPhone 6 series which is still active in India. “This means Apple now has more portfolio of low end iPhone which it can use to acquire new users in emerging markets,” he said.