Apple e-stores coming to India in 2020, offline retail stores to follow from 2021

Apple e-stores coming to India in 2020, offline retail stores to follow from 2021

Tim Cook, Apple's CEO on Wednesday announced that Apple will have its own e-store in the coming months. Apple will also have its own flagship brick and mortar store by 2021.

(Source: Reuters) (Source: Reuters)

Apple has decided to take a step further to make its presence felt in India. Tim Cook, Apple's CEO on Wednesday in the company's annual shareholder meeting announced that Apple will open its e-store in India sometime this year, TechCrunch reported. The company will also set up its first flagship brick and mortar store next year in 2021. Currently, Apple sells its products through third-party stores and via online retail platforms like Amazon, Flipkart and Croma.

By going online, Apple can attract a lot of customers and give serious competition to existing brands which dominate the e-commerce arena where gadgets are concerned. It's not before long that the Cupertino, California-based device and services will sell iPhone, iPads and Apple Mac computers through its e-store.

I am a huge believer in the opportunity in India. It's a country with the vibrancy and demographics that are just unparalleled, Cook said in a shareholder meeting.

Cook further said that approval from the government was needed to go in ourselves (in the Indian market). I don't want somebody else running the brand for us. Cook said.

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. The Apple CEO had said in August. He, however, did not give a launch date and said it would be announced soon.

There were talks about Apple's brick and mortar store opening in India by Q3 2020. According to a report by Bloomberg, India eased its FDI norms that forced companies like Apple to source 30 per cent of their production locally. For years, iPhone makers have been trying to work their way against these rules to include exports as part of the requirement. Apple's first company-owned brick and mortar store is likely to open in Mumbai, according to reports.

Apple's decision to go up front with its own experiential stores comes at a time when rival brands are focusing on offline experience stores to assert the brand presence. OnePlus has been working on its flagship offline stores in select cities to reach out to a wider set of customers, which will operate alongside its existing retail stores. Brands like Xiaomi, Realme and Oppo are also jumping in on the bandwagon with a lot of premium offline outlets. Samsung currently rules the offline space.

Apple's production and availability has been suffering a bit, owing to the Coronavirus endemic in China. Earlier, the company had made an announcement saying that they would not be able to meet their targets for the March quarter, owing to the virus.

With Apple's executives and workers not being able to return to their workplaces in China, the company has been experiencing delays.