Apple has been shifting the manufacture of components for some of its largest devices to India due to supply issues with usual suppliers in China. The iPhone 14 is the most recent example of this. However, Jabil Inc., an Indian manufacturer, is now rumoured to be producing AirPods enclosures and exporting them to China and Vietnam for final assembly.
Even while it seems like all of the AirPods production is still stuck in China, there is additional proof that Apple plans to increase its usage of India as a manufacturing hub.
iPhones, and now AirPods
As US trade restrictions tighten and troubles with Covid persist, Apple has been trying to reduce its reliance on China. After starting iPhone 14 manufacturing in India, Apple has undertaken a number of other changes in the country.
It’s hardly shocking that Apple decided to set up shop in India to manufacture iPhones. Bloomberg reports that Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has “made it a national goal to strengthen India’s manufacturing sector,” providing tax breaks and other incentives to businesses that move operations to India. Having the supply chain concerns with China eliminated is just another motivation for Apple to relocate to India.
Even now, in India, AirPods aren’t quite ready for final assembly. Luxshare, an Apple supplier that produces AirPods, has agreed to take over a closed-down production factory in India, suggesting a move among certain Chinese manufacturing businesses that deal with Apple to establish plants in India. Though this doesn’t prove that AirPods are now manufactured in India, the new Jabil component production raises the possibility that it has.
During Covid, Apple’s reliance on Chinese manufacturing severely limited iPhone supplies, so this is excellent news for customers. It will be lot less of a hassle to get your hands on a fresh set of AirPods if the company has a more diversified supply chain.
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