Apple is not only looking to scale up its India game-plan to improve its sales but also as an investment destination. In an exclusive interaction with BusinessLine , Tim Cook, CEO of Apple, said that the facilities in Bengaluru and Hyderabad are only the beginning of what’s to come.

“We have thought through many areas (of investment) and we will move ahead in all these areas.

“What we have announced in Hyderabad and Bengaluru are just a couple of initial things, there’s more coming. We are committed to India,” Cook said in his first interaction with an Indian media organisation.

Asked if Apple would consider manufacturing iPhones in India, Cook said that it would be a logical move over the long term.

“We are looking at India as a partner across (segments), not just for any one area. Manufacturing is something we will logically look at.”

Pre-owned phones On the controversy around selling pre-owned phones, Cook said he would urge the Centre to come to an agreement. “If you think about automobiles — brands like Lexus and Mercedes have been selling certified pre-owned cars. We have this programme (of selling pre-owned phones) in the US and in most parts of the world.

“When they are sold, they are sold with warranty, just like a new product. We would never sell a product that we didn’t think was right,” he said.

Tie-ups with telcos Cook said that he was not chasing top market share in India but would partner with telecom operators to enhance the quality of services.

“We are in India for the next thousand years. Our horizon is very long. We are focused on best, not most. So, it doesn’t bother me that we don’t have top market share,” he said.

In the US and other markets, Apple gets a significant part of its sales through partnerships with telecom operators. In India, it has not been able to push through this model.

During his visit, Cook is meeting a number of operators to see if Apple can work with telcos to improve network quality.

“I see a great technical collaboration between Apple and main carriers in India to make sure the iPhone works incredibly on those networks.

“The feedback I have thus far is very positive on that. We push really hard, in some ways they think we are crazy, but they love it as well that someone is pushing them hard to work together to solve the most difficult problem.”

China comparison Asked if India could be as big as China for Apple some day, the Apple chief said that all the ingredients are in place for India to grow exponentially.

“I see a lot of positive things happen in the country and more will happen.

“From GDP point of view there is no doubt in my mind that India will set new records. I can feel it will happen,” Cook said.

FULL INTERVIEW

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