In a press release, Apple has announced it is opening a new development office in Hyderabad, India. The team located here will apparently focus on improving Apple Maps, which is deeply integrated across Apple’s hardware and software as dedicated apps and embedded in other services, like Siri. The new center will create up to 4000 new jobs in the local economy. It is currently unclear as to the nature of the workforce, as Apple has preferred to keep its core software engineering team in California with most working solely in Cupertino.
India May 19
India May 18
The Economic Times reports that Tim Cook is meeting with the heads of major carriers in India in order to form ‘strategic partnerships’ as the country accelerates its LTE rollout. The smartphone market in India has so far been constrained by slow data speeds in most parts of the country.
Cook has said the advent of high-speed 4G networks in India will expand the market for iPhones, flagging elsewhere, making it a key market for the company.
Cook is said to be meeting with Bharti Airtel, the largest carrier in the country; Reliance Jio Infocomm, which plans to roll out LTE services nationwide this year; as well as Vodafone and others …
India May 16
Tim Cook, who is currently in Beijing, is headed on to India tomorrow, reports Reuters. Sources say that he is due to meet with Prime Minister Modi, who he last met in September back in the US (above).
Apple chief executive Tim Cook will visit India this week and meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the second leg of his Asian tour, two sources familiar with the matter said, as the company seeks to revive sluggish iPhone sales.
One item on the agenda is likely to be India’s reported rejection of Apple’s request to sell used iPhones in the country …
India May 3
Bloomberg speculates that India could refuse to grant Apple permission to sell used iPhones in the country citing comments from a telecommunications ministry official today.
The U.S. company’s application has been turned down, the official said, asking to not be identified, citing official policy [while] Apple declined to comment.
Apple had hoped that used iPhone sales would be a good way to get a foothold in a country where its market share is just 2%, and where 80% of phones cost less than $150. Its iPhone Upgrade Program in the United States gave the company a plentiful supply of used phones that it could have sold at much lower prices in India without sacrificing margin, which must have seemed like the perfect plan …
India April 28
A report back in February that Apple would be allowed to open retail stores in India has been corroborated by India’s Economic Times. India normally doesn’t allow single-brand retail stores unless at least 30% of their products are made within the country, but Apple is reportedly set to be granted an exemption on the grounds that its products are ‘cutting-edge technology.’
A government panel has recommended exempting Apple from mandatory local sourcing norms, a move which would pave the way for Apple to open single-brand retail stores in the country. “The committee has found that the company’s products are cutting edge technology and state-of-the-art. It has recommended to exempt them from the local sourcing norms,” sources said.
The exemption is a pretty big deal for Apple …
India April 26
A new motion signed into law in India will require all phones, including iPhones, to feature a ‘panic button’ to call emergency services and GPS for location pings from January 1st, 2017. The provisions are being brought in to aid the ‘security of women’, via the Indian Express.
Obviously, GPS has existed in iPhones since the iPhone 3G but it seems that Apple will have to make some software modifications to iOS to comply with the panic button request.