Tata, one of India’s oldest and most respected conglomerates, is inching closer to assembling iPhones in India. Per Bloomberg, the company has signed a deal to acquire a factory in Karnataka belonging to Wistron, one of Apple’s three global contract manufacturers.
It was only in 2017 that Wistron started assembling iPhones in India, but in May 2023, the company announced that it was making an exit and was looking to sell its factory in Kolar, near Bengaluru. Back then, it was reported that Wistron was planning to sell the entire facility to an Indian conglomerate.
It appears Tata was the Indian conglomerate involved in the negotiations, and as per insider sources, the company is reportedly paying to the tune of $600 million to take over the factory. This would also mark the first time Tata enters the contract manufacturing segment.
Notably, Tata will honor Wistron’s commitment to Apple regarding ramping factory capabilities and delivering iPhones worth $1.8 billion by 2024. Apple has lately been trying to move away from China and into South-East Asian markets like India and Vietnam, where labor is cheap and plenty.
If you have the itching hope of Tata helping make iPhones cheaper in India, abandon all such dreams. Yes, Tata made the world’s cheapest car. But for iPhones, it is just making them on contract for Apple. That means Apple has the final say over the sticker price.
If history is any indication, no price cut will happen to iPhones sold in India in the immediate future — with or without Tata coming into the picture.