IANS

Apple registered a massive 48 per cent growth in iPhone shipments in India in the calendar year 2021, and was on course to log a record 4.4 per cent market share for the full year, new data showed on Monday.

Apple shipped a record 5.4 million iPhones to India in the entire year, and 2.2 million in the festive quarter (Q4) alone, according to Gurugram-based market research firm CMR.

On the quarterly basis, the Cupertino-based giant registered 34 per cent growth in the October-December period.

"Apple just had its best year in India, shipping more than 5 million iPhones, and on track to notch a historic 4.4 per cent market share in a rather hyper-competitive smartphone market," Prabhu Ram, Head-Industry Intelligence Group, CMR, told IANS.

Through the course of the year, Apple continued to register market gains on the back of increased share of domestic manufacturing, aggressive retail initiatives, and robust consumer demand through the all-important festive Deepavali sale.

"The key to Apple's market performance is in the fact that it was able to manage and diversify its supply chains through the pandemic. In India, for instance, Apple is working with multiple ODMs to produce its flagship iPhone models," Ram added.

The iPhone 12 (with 40 per cent market share) was the most sought-after model in Q4 in India, followed by iPhone 11, SE (2020), iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 Pro Max models.

In the July-September period (Q3), Apple had shipped over 1.53 million iPhone units in the country.

"With the potential launch of iPhone SE 2022 edition in the first half of 2022, and increased accessibility and affordability on its older-generation iPhones, Apple will be well-placed to turbocharge its India growth story," Ram noted.

Riding on the stellar performance of iPhone 11 and XR, Apple had for the first time doubled its smartphone market share in India to nearly 4 per cent in the festive quarter of 2020.

Apple has now started assembling its new flagship iPhone 13 in India, as the tech giant prepares to manufacture/assemble its top-of-the-line smartphones in the country.

iPhone 13 is being assembled on trial basis at the Foxconn plant in Chennai, and will be available in the domestic market, as well as for exports from the country by early next year.

Apple is reportedly ramping up production of iPhones, iPads, Macs, and other devices in India and Vietnam to end its dependence on China.

The tech giant is already assembling its highest-selling models iPhone 12, iPhone 11 and XR in India, along with iPhone SE, 7 and 6S.

Apple started manufacturing iPhones in India in 2017 with iPhone SE.

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