There is good news for Apple devotees. Their favorite gadget Apple iPhone 5 make its debut in India on 2nd November. As blogged by us earlier, Apple will bring their latest smartphone around Diwali to take maximum advantage of holiday season sale, has announced its release exactly as per our prediction. The iPhone 5 was launched in the US on September 21.
In order to expand its user base in India, Apple will start selling the iPhone 5 through two specialized master distributors – Redington India and Ingram Micro, through whom the iPhone 5 stock will be routed, including the retail operations of the two existing carrier partners. It already has a relationship with the two for distribution of iPads and iPods, besides HCL Infosystems.
Since Apple sells only unlocked phones in India, other carriers and a host of other resellers too may be able to sell iPhone 5 now by directly buying in bulk from its master distributors. As happens in India because of its vast geography and various small and big retailers, some retailers might sell iPhone 5 cheaper than others, leading to differential pricing of iPhone 5 in India and Apple India can’t control this practice as some retailers might play with little margins to sell in quantity.
So far, neither Apple India nor the master distributors have announced the official prices of the iPhone 5, but it is expected to be in the range of Rs 45,000 to Rs 60,000, unless Apple springs a big surprise by going in for an aggressive pricing. It is speculated that 16 GB version will be priced Rs 45,500, 32 GB version to be Rs 52,500, and 64GB model to cost around Rs. 60,000.
The above prices seem to be very high for very price-sensitive Indian market and only coming months wil tell how much sales volume is achieved by Apple. In order to increase its acceptability among vast majority of buyers who can’t afford such an expensive smartphone despite their desire to possess one, Apple India should offer locked-in iPhone 5 with contractual plans the way they offer in US and other European countries. Unfortunately none of the high-end smartphones sellers has experimented with this model of selling in India and may be it is high time for Apple to take lead in this marketing strategy also.
Apple has also started billing in India Rupees for the apps bought from its App Store. The move will benefit the vast app developer community that sells on the App Store as well as the users who download paid applications and content from the company’s online store. The billing so far was being done in US dollars. Google Play Store had started INR pricing long ago.