Apple's shifting AirPods and Beats production to India, report claims

AirPods Pro and Powerbeats Pro
(Image credit: iMore)

Apple has reportedly asked suppliers to shift manufacturing of some AirPods and Betas products to India as the company continues its work to diversify manufacturing pipelines.

Apple has historically relied on Chinese manufacturing, something that caused issues during the COVID-19 pandemic thanks to multiple local lockdowns. Since then, work has been underway to ensure that Apple's eggs aren't all in one manufacturing basket. A new report claims that the next step of that involves AirPods and Beats accessories.


"Apple has been talking with a number of its suppliers about increasing production in India, including of key acoustics devices, as early as next year," three people familiar with the matter reportedly told Nikkei Asia for its report. Two other people are said to have told the outlet that Foxconn is now working to begin Beats accessory manufacturing in India — with AirPods set to also switch to the country in due course.

Apple is already a big player in terms of Indian manufacturing. The iPhone 14 is already set to be built there soon enough, while other iPhones are also assembled in the country.

While no fixed timescales have been shared, it's reported that Apple wants its AirPods and Beats products to be built in India as soon as next year, although it remains to be seen whether that's a viable timeframe for Foxconn.

Apple's move to diversify production is something that can only benefit customers — buying some Apple products over the last two years has been difficult to say the least. New Macs often face weeks-long delivery estimates, while those looking to buy Apple's best iPhone, the new iPhone 14 Pro, will have to wait a long time before taking delivery if they place an order today.

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.