Frenzy for the new made in India iPhone15 reached a fever pitch on the first day of its launch with brands and enthusiastic customers wanting a piece of the action that happens every time Apple introduces a new phone. While many loyal fans preferred to queue up for hours at Apple stores in Mumbai and Delhi, quick delivery player Blinkit offered to deliver the new iphones in 8 minutes to the doorsteps of buyers in Delhi, Mumbai, Pune and Bengaluru.. Not to be left behind Reliance Jio launched a scheme where subscribers get six months of free mobile service for customers buying iPhone15 from Reliance Retail stores or JioMart.
Apple’s flagship store in Bandra Kurla Complex, Mumbai saw tech enthusiasts line up bright and early on Friday morning to be amongst the first in the country to own the device. Visitors to Apple’s store in Saket also reported that the crowds were not thinning even in afternoon, as enthusiastic buyers thronged from all over Delhi to the store. Apple’s third party vendors and resellers such as Croma and Unicorn also reported teeming crowds at their storefronts. Rival brands such as Samsung and Huawei set up special kiosks with these vendors on Friday; in hopes of luring an itinerant Apple customer to purchase their smartphone instead. Customers buying iPhone15 from Reliance Retail stores or JioMart are eligible for a complimentary plan of ₹399 a month for six months on premium connectivity plans with Reliance Jio (3GB data a day and unlimited voice).
Apple’s fan following in India defies price pressures and continues to increase exponentially. The Indian prices for the latest iPhones continue to be the highest in the world. The iPhone15 on average is being sold at a 20 per cent markup in India, compared to its retail price in the United States. Despite this, Apple is expected to increase its iPhone shipments by 6.7 million units in 2023, new iPhone models will contribute to a third of these shipments. “Expect Apple to do 9 million shipments of iPhone in 2023,” Navekendar Singh, Associate Vice President with IDC India told businessline.
There were also customers who took to social media alleging that certain retailers tried to take advantage of the price insensitivity of Apple customers. by forcing them to buy expensive accessories on top of the iPhone15 (Pro and Pro max) itself, saying that it was mandated by Apple. Customers alleged that some retailers cancelled pre orders as well, to sell the devices to walk-in buyers at a premium.
As Apple continues to bolster its presence in the India market, sales for iPhone15 sales this weekend are expected to surpass iPhone14. Sources told businessline that the pre-orders iPhone15 were up by 50 per cent in comparison to Apple’s iPhone launch last year. Niel Shah, Vice President for Research at Counterpoint Research told businessline, “Apple has been seeing robust demand for its iPhones which is almost 2 times that for last year. The demand for iPhone15 series is going to be even higher. Apple’s readiness for the new launch is 3 times compared to the launch of iPhone14 last year.”
Market analysts told businessline that retailers have stocked at least 300,000 iPhone15 Pro and Pro Max units expecting a significant surge in demand. But they might run shot on iPhone15 Pro models during Diwali season