After iPhones, soon Made in India AirPods and Beats headphones: details inside

US-based Apple has reportedly asked its suppliers to move some production of AirPods and Beats headphones to India, according to a Nikkei report. The move comes as the iPhone maker seeks to gradually diversify its production from China to reduce the risk of supply chain disruptions stemming from the country’s strict zero COVID policy and tensions with states. Citing three people familiar with the matter, the Nikkei report says iPhone maker Foxconn is preparing to manufacture Beats headphones in the country and eventually hopes to produce AirPods there as well, two people with direct knowledge of the matter said. . The move, he says, will be a big win for New Delhi as it tries to move up the global supply chain.

According to the report, Luxshare Precision Industry and its subsidiaries, which already produce AirPods in Vietnam and China, also plan to help Apple manufacture the popular wireless headphones in India. However, Luxshare is more focused on its Vietnamese AirPods operations at the moment and may be slower than competitors to start meaningful production of Apple products in India, one of the people said.

Foxconn declined to comment, while Apple and Luxshare did not respond to Nikkei Asia’s request for comment.

Apple started iPhone production in India in 2017 by a small supplier, Wistron, but only ramped up production last year. The company’s latest iPhone 14 series is also manufactured in the country for local and global markets. While manufacturing in India initially aimed to serve the huge local market, Apple is now developing the country as a strategic production base, with exports aimed at markets such as Europe, according to the Nikkei report.

India’s share of the global handset production market increases from around 9% in 2016 to 16% in 2021, according to Counterpoint Research. It plans to spend $30 billion to further strengthen its electronics supply chain, from semiconductors and materials to displays and electronics manufacturing, to attract more investment. Meanwhile, China’s share has fallen from 74% in 2016, before the trade war and the pandemic, to around 67% in 2021.

Joey Yen, technical analyst at IDC, told Nikkei Asia that India will become a key alternative for electronics production outside of China.

“India is learning from China’s success over the years, and it has similar potential to become a very significant player in the global supply chain. It has young engineering talents and a large workforce, and a huge domestic market as its base,” Yen said.

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