Apple Store logoSource: iMore

What you need to know

  • Apple has confirmed that its new India store will not open until 2021.
  • The revelation was made at Apple's shareholder meeting on February 26.
  • The store is set to be located in Mumbai's Bandra Kurla Complex.

Apple has confirmed that its first-ever India Apple Store will not open until 2021, however, online sales in the country will begin later this year.

As reported by TechCrunch, Tim Cook briefly addressed shareholders on the market at Apple's annual shareholder's meeting yesterday, February 26.

According to the report:

For a decade, Apple has solely relied on third-party sellers, stores, and marketplaces to sell its products in India. That will begin to change this year.

At the company's annual shareholder meeting Wednesday, chief executive Tim Cook told investors that Apple will open its online store in India, the world's second-largest smartphone market, at some point this year, and set up its first flagship brick-and-mortar store next year.

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

Back in October it was first reported that Apple had secured a location for its first Apple Store in India in Mumbai's Maker Maxity mall, which is situated in the Bandra Kurla Complex.

Last month, a report cast doubt on the planned September deadline for opening the store, something that Apple has now confirmed. Whilst Apple hasn't offered a clear timeframe, it is now confirmed the store will open at some point next year.

As the report mentions Apple has also struggled with its online presence in the region, however, it seems Apple plans to open up its online store in the nation sometime this year.

Apple has struggled in the nation for several reasons. The majority of smartphones in India are priced at $150 or less, and many of its citizens can't afford to buy Apple products. This is compounded by very heavy import duties levied by the government, which makes the phones even more expensive. Apple has recently begun to manufacture some of its iPhones in India, which is important because Indian FDI (Foreign Direct Investment) laws prevent 100% single-brand retail from foreign companies. At least 30% of goods sold must be sourced from within the country, hence Apple's push to manufacture phones in India.