Apple Cuts iPhone Prices in India, Too

Posted on April 4, 2019 by Paul Thurrott in Apple, iOS with 2 Comments

In the wake of two iPhone price cuts in China, Apple has cut the price of the iPhone XR by a whopping 25 percent in India.

That’s according to a report in Reuters, citing multiple sources.

“Apple is going to change their game,” one source told the publication, referring to the price cuts. So where the base 64 GB iPhone XR was originally $1113 in India, it’s been reduced to about $850. That’s a price reduction of over $260. But it’s still a lot more expensive than the $750 cost of that iPhone model in the US.

The other iPhone XR models, with more storage, have been similarly discounted, Reuters says. And it is likely just a temporary offer: One source told Reuters it was a “short-term promotional offer” only.

I’m not so sure. Apple has held similar secretive sales on virtually all of its products since November 2018, when it became clear to the company that its 2017/2018-era price hikes—which I’ve referred to as “Apple Jacked”—had turned off consumers in droves. Apple rarely, if ever, holds explicit sales. But it has secretly dropped prices across its product lineups over the past several months, especially at third-party retailers like Amazon.

The iPhone XR price cut makes the handset more competitive with Samsung and OnePlus phones. Samsung’s recently-launched Galaxy S10e starts at about $805 in India, while the OnePlus 6T starts at about $550. Both firms outsell Apple in that country, and those prices—unlike Apple’s—closely align with their costs in the United States.

As in China, Apple has struggled in India, and it plans to move some manufacturing there to help. The firm controlled about 23 percent of India’s premium smartphone market last year, which covers handsets that cost $400 or more. But its share of the overall smartphone market there is just 1 percent.

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