Apple may revive its plan to make iPads, AirPods charging cases in India: Report

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Last fiscal, Apple made iPhone models worth $14 billion in India as part of its effort to make more devices outside China. Now, the Cupertino-based company is gearing up to diversify its production operations in India, including for iPad and AirPod models. After facing a hurdle earlier, Apple is reportedly rolling back its plan to make iPad units in India and is looking for a manufacturing partner in the country. Additionally, the company is looking to start producing AirPods in India from early next year.

A Moneycontrol report citing unnamed sources says that Apple may soon start looking for a manufacturing partner to make iPad models in India. The move comes after previous attempts to collaborate with China-based BYD for iPad production were halted due to government restrictions over geopolitical concerns.

Apple is also said to be looking at scaling up production of components for the AirPods wireless charging case in India through Jabil. The report states that it plans to start producing AirPods in the country by early 2025. The brand has reportedly started trial production of components for the wireless charging case with Jabil in Pune and is considering a similar arrangement with Taiwan’s Foxconn. After quality testing and final approval, Jabil will scale up commercial production of wireless charging case parts for AirPods, the report states. This can meet export requirements and meet domestic demand.

The Indian government is said to be encouraging Apple to consider manufacturing laptops and desktops in India in the future. The company has reportedly shared “big plans” for India for the next two to three years. Apple is preparing to build an alternative supply chain in India to bring more partners to the country and enhance the capabilities of existing partners.

Apple in recent years has started assembling its latest iPhone models in India, a significant shift from its practice of reserving the majority of parts for huge Chinese factories run by its main Taiwanese assemblers. The shift of production areas from China to India comes under the ambit of the country’s production-linked incentive (PLI) schemes through Foxconn and Tata Electronics. Last year, Apple made the iPhone 15 series assembled in India available for purchase in the country on the first day of sales alongside iPhone units manufactured in China.

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