Preview at WWDC likely in June, followed by September launch.
Apple Retail Stores Coming to India?
Apple Inc. may open its own shops following the Indian government allowing full ownership of single-brand retail stores by foreign companies, according to a senior official of the department of industrial policy and promotion (DIPP).According to the report, Apple's interest comes as Indian regulators have eliminated ownership requirements that had previously required single-brand retail outlets such as Apple Stores to have at least 49% domestic investment.
The maker of the iPad and iPhone has been in discussion with the department for some time and is keen to re-enter Indian market after an earlier bid to do so in 2006, said the official on condition of anonymity.
One potential hurdle does remain, as ventures with high levels of foreign investment such as what Apple would offer will be required to source 30% of their product value from small businesses in India. But regulators appear willing to address that requirement as well depending on Apple's official analysis of the viability of a retail effort in India.
When asked whether the 30% local sourcing clause will be a hindrance, the DIPP official said, “Let Apple finalize its business plan and the investment it wants to make. If they tell us that the 30% sourcing is a problem, at that stage we will look into it,” he said.The report notes that Apple attempted to create an Indian presence back in 2006 with a tech support center, but the company quickly abandoned those plans.