Apple says it is “very bullish” on “hugely exciting” India market; know reason why

Apple may not have had a very exciting holiday quarter, but its India story was apparently “hugely exciting”. While reporting the company’s financial results for the fiscal 2023 first quarter ended December 31, 2022, CEO Tim Cook said that Apple set a quarterly revenue record in the world’s second largest smartphone market despite a 5 percent fall in overall global revenue.

“Looking at the business in India, we set a quarterly revenue record and grew very strong double digits year over year and so we feel very good about how we performed,” Cook said during the earnings call, adding that “That’s despite the headwinds [that we talked about].”

Calling India, a “major focus”, Cook attributed the growth to increasing affordability –that it has started to offer— through financing options and trade-ins tied to more choice in products spanning multiple price points from entry-level to top-end. It’s making more iPhones in India now than ever, too. The company is also ramping up on inventory and distribution. It brought its official online store to the country in 2020 and is gearing to open its first “Apple Retail” offline store soon.

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“We actually did fairly well through COVID in India and I’m even more bullish now, hopefully on the other side of it,” Cook said, adding that “that’s the reason why we are investing there by bringing retail there, bringing the online store there and putting out significant amount of energy there. I’m very bullish on India.”

Apple posted quarterly revenue of $117.2 billion during the fiscal 2023 first quarter, down 5 percent year over year, and quarterly earnings per diluted share of $1.88. iPhone sales were “expectedly” down –more specifically by 8 percent— due to iPhone 14 Pro/iPhone 14 Pro Max supply constraints and Mac sales were down “substantially” by 29 percent possibly due to lack of new updates during the period. Apple Watch and AirPods sales also fell by 8 percent.

The iPad was the silver lining recording 30 percent jump in revenue hinting that the “budget” iPad and iPad Pro model refresh with M2 silicon were well received by buyers. Revenue for Apple’s services division also grew 6 percent.

“During the December quarter, we achieved a major milestone and are excited to report that we now have more than 2 billion active devices as part of our growing installed base,” Cook further added.

All eyes will now be on Apple’s next breakthrough product, the long rumoured mixed-reality headset which is reportedly named “Reality Pro”, and due for a global reveal around WWDC 2023. The iPhone 15 will also be a litmus test for the company even as Cupertino looks set to comply with EU regulations bringing major changes to iPhone in future including USB Type C charging and third-party app stores on iOS.