Apple is set to open its first retail stores in India this week, with the first store to be located in Mumbai, followed by a second in Delhi. The move brings the Cupertino-based company closer to one of the world’s youngest populations, as India’s economy is expected to see solid growth with its 1.4 billion population, combined with the market’s increasing appetite for high-end smartphones.
The Mumbai store will be located within the Jio World Drive Mall and cover over 22,000 square feet. The store boasts a beautifully handcrafted timber ceiling made from over 450,000 individual timber elements. Each tile is made from 408 pieces of timber, forming 31 modules per tile, with a total of 1,000 tiles that make up the ceiling. In fact, there are over 450,000 individual timber elements, all of which were assembled in Delhi, according to Apple. The store will be staffed by a team of 100 people who speak 20 languages between them, offering customers an experience that combines retail and education.
While speaking to media ahead of the opening of the store in Mumbai’s bustling Bandra Kurla Complex, Senior Vice-President of Apple Retail Store, Deirdre O’Brien said, “Our products and services are made to enable our customers to pursue their passions.”
The flagship store, like Apple’s other retail locations such as Dubai and London, will be a hybrid of a retail store and an education centre, which Apple refers to as a “Town Square.” Apple’s stores in India, like its other flagship locations, will feature the new Genius Grove, which is essentially a redesigned Genius Bar, as well as a new in-store experience called “Today at Apple.” Apple will also offer educational workshops and events, such as sessions for photography, music, gaming, and app development.
Apple’s expansion into India comes at a time when the company is investing heavily in expanding its manufacturing base in the country. Since 2017, Apple has been manufacturing iPhones in India, and last year it began assembling its flagship iPhone 14 in the country. Experts predict that Apple could make 25% of all iPhones globally in India by 2025.
Gaining a foothold in India’s aspirational consumer market is a significant move for Apple, as the global consumer tech industry increasingly relies on India’s young consumers to drive growth. Apple already commands a large share of the premium smartphone segment in India, with the growth in sales fueled by a boom in iPhone sales, particularly older generation models.
Apple’s first retail stores in India are expected to offer many untapped opportunities for the brand as it seeks to thrive in a market that has yet to reach its full potential.
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