Apple Inc. will begin manufacturing its latest iPhone 14 in India as it seeks to shift away from China amid economic and political tensions with the United States.
The company unveiled the latest smartphone earlier this month at its headquarters in Cupertino, California. Apple claims the product features a longer-lasting battery, more powerful camera, and faster processor.
"The new iPhone 14 lineup introduces groundbreaking new technologies and important safety capabilities. We’re excited to be manufacturing iPhone 14 in India," Apple said in a statement on Monday, according to the Associated Press.
Apple intends to sell the phones locally to India's customer base but also export them globally. In the next few days, the sale of locally produced iPhone 14s will begin in India.
AP notes that the country is the second smartphone market in the world, but Apple has failed in recent years to expand its business due to cheaper locally produced competitors.
JP Morgan analysts estimate that Apple's decision will move approximately 5% of iPhone 14 production to India by late 2022, according to Reuters. If the company keeps expanding its presence in India, by 2025, experts believe Apple could make one out of four iPhones in the country.
The manufacturing is overseen by Foxconn, Apple's iPhone assembler, at the Sriperumbudur factory near Chennai. Since 2017, Apple has made only older models in India, not the latest products this close to launch.
Analysts believe that over the next few years, Apple will continue diversifying more of its product manufacturing outside of China. A number of issues, such as Covid-19 lockdown restrictions and geopolitical tensions with the U.S. over Taiwan, have pushed the technology firm to begin this relocation effort.