Premium quality, sleek design, incomparable performance – what sets an Apple product apart from a device from any other company? Is it their superb camera? Or is it their bionic chip?
Actually, it is the mix of everything that is premium and of the top-notch quality packed under the same hood to make it the best phone available in the market. From gaming to making short films, an Apple product never disappoints. They became the trendsetter in the mobile segment since they launched the first smartphone, the first Apple. Thereafter more than a decade has passed, and every year the company launches a flagship product that sets the trend of the year for the whole of the industry.
The only catch that stops, especially the Indian customers from buying an Apple device is the hefty price tag that comes with it. Though the company dominates the Indian market in the premium segment, where its main rival is Samsung, cheaper android alternatives like products from OnePlus, Xiaomi dominates the market in the Indian sub-continent because of their cheaper price and higher on paper features.
Apple is looking for more as it recognizes the potential of the Indian market. In the second-largest populated country, a substantial amount of people still does not have access to a smartphone and Apple wants a larger share of this market. With competitive pricing, Apple is expecting to land a heavy blow in the Indian market.
Apple’s market share in the country is estimated to be only 2 percent. For the last few quarters, Apple’s market share is increasing as Data from the International Data Corporation (IDC) shows. The company hiked it’s market share in the premium segment from 41.2 percent last year to 48.8 percent in the quarter than ended in June 2020.
Apple online retail store – the start of a new era?
The first step has been taken by the company to achieve a greater market share in the subcontinent. Apple announced that on September 23rd, the first online retail chain of the American technology giant will go live. Although previously there were Apple stores available across the country, this is the first time a first-party retail store is being opened by the company in the country. Previously, Apple products were also available through online retail stores like Amazon and Flipkart.
The online store of Apple has been on the chart for quite some time. Apple CEO, Tim Cook had confirmed the launch during an earnings call earlier this year. However, the coronavirus led lockdowns to disrupted their plans. The company wanted to be on the market before the festive season starts and with the inauguration fixed on the 23rd of September, they would meet the deadline comfortably.
Media agency Mint reported comments of Deirdre O’Brien, Senior Vice President of Retail and People at Apple, as she said, “One thing we’ve learned is when we enter the market with Apple Retail, all boats rise. It creates tremendous interest in our products, which are available on our online store and through our network of trusted resellers, allowing us to connect with our customers where they are. As of today, Apple Store Online is selling a wide range of Apple products.”
Tim Cook, the CEO of the company tweeted saying, “We know how important it is for our customers to stay in touch with those they love and the world around them. We can’t wait to connect with our customers and expand support in India with the Apple Store online on September 23!”
The online store would feature the whole range of Apple products – from phones to MacBooks. Not only this, but the company also claims that from now Indian customers would be able to get first-hand support and services from the company. The company also brings a dedicated education store for Indian customers. They say that they would offer special prices for the Indian students in all accessories. Since the COVID-19 pandemic hit and the schools and colleges were forced to be closed to subdue the effect of the coronavirus, global sales figures of products like iPad have increased as students are forced to attend online classes from home. Discounts on products for educational purposes might boost Apple sales overnight in the Indian market.
The company seems committed to the Indian market. They enter the country with all guns blazing as they also promise to include Apple’s premium support option, called AppleCare Plus.
The online store from the trillion-dollar conglomerate would incorporate both Cash on Delivery (COD) system and UPI to make sure that transactions from the Indian customers are seamless. As most of the country still depends on cash transactions, to make a mark in the market COD is a must-have feature for any online store.
The company, for now, would only feature first-hand products of the company only. Although, in the future third party products might also be included.
This retail store might help the company overcome in many areas that they had been lacking previously. It would ensure that the customers achieve a premium quality experience while shopping from the company along with the availability of the full range of Apple products, which was previously unavailable. Tech-savvy customers would be able to choose the best configuration of their Mac computers, according to their need, a feature previously not available in India.
Customers would also be able to engrave their Apple products like iPads, Apple Pencil, Airpods, and Airpods Pro in Hindi, Tamil, Bengali, Marathi, Telugu, Kannada, and English.