Tag - India
Apple may have its own retail outlets in India after all, as the government has made changes to requirements hindering the company's progress. Rules that force retailers to source at least 30 percent of its products from within the country have been eased, giving Apple and other major companies with their own retail presence the ability to open stores in India, without having to worry about fulfilling the requirement for a while.
Apple's ongoing quest to open Apple Stores in India may soon become a reality, according to a report. The government is allegedly preparing to allow Apple to own its own retail stores in the country, without the need to abide by a rule that requires 30 percent of goods sold in a single-brand store to be locally sourced, with multiple regulators seemingly in agreement in providing Apple with an exemption that can last between two and three years.
Apple may still have a lifeline in its request for exemption from the Indian government's rule that 30 percent of the goods sold in single-brand stores must be locally sourced, reports Reuters. After a preliminary ruling from the Commerce and Industry ministry had delivered a recommendation in favor of the exemption, an Indian Finance ministry source indicated that Apple's request was in line to be blocked. Now, it appears, the two senior ministers concerned will be meeting to discuss their respective positions, offering Apple some hope that it will still receive the waiver.
Apple is not going to be permitted to sell used iPhones in India, a government minister has advised. Announced today by commerce and industry minister Nirmala Sitharaman, the government is "not in favor of any company selling used phones in the [country], however certified they may be," nixing Apple's proposal to refurbish iPhones it collects from customers upgrading their devices and resell them in India.
The Indian Finance Ministry's decision to knock back an Apple exemption that would have freed it from a requirement that 30 percent of a future Apple Store's content must be made locally came with a particularly puzzling explanation: Apple's products, it said, were not"state-of-the-art" or "cutting-edge," which at first strains credulity. Unless the decision is reversed, it means Apple's goal to open at least three Apple Stores in India by 2017 will have to be put on the backburner, which is a significant blow to Apple's current plans for the country.
Apple's plans to rollout Apple Stores in India have been thrown into doubt following the rejection by the Indian government of a special exemption request. Under Indian regulations, companies seeking to open single-brand stores in the country must stock their stores with a minimum 30 percent of products either manufactured in, or produced, in the country. The news is potentially embarrassing for Apple's senior hierarchy, a number of whom were recently in India on a charm offensive, which culminated in a meeting between Apple CEO Tim Cook and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modhi.
In one interview given to an Indian television network, Apple CEO Tim Cook acknowledged that the iPhone was "overpriced" in India, saying that he wanted consumers there to be be able to buy iPhones "at a price that looks like the US price." He also talked again about the desire to invest further in India, praising the talent the company wants to invest in. In the StartupFest interview that took place earlier today in Amsterdam, Cook shot down the idea of Apple creating its own "piggyback" carrier network for iPhone users.
Apple CEO has met with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, with the two discussing Apple's plans for India and the opportunities this presents for the Indian tech sector and economy in a get-together on Saturday local time. Cook also helped launch Modi's updated iPhone app, which prompted the Indian PM to take to Twitter to express his delight at the gesture. Also discussed were issues around cyber security and data encryption, reports The Times of India.
Apple CEO Tim Cook has continued his tour of India with a new television interview. Among his talking points with the show's host on India's NDTV, Cook made it clear how important the Indian market is to Apple, explaining that it is a top-five priority for the Cupertino-based company. In this latest interview, Cook also kept on point with the messages he has been reiterating throughout the week-long tour, which is that Apple is playing a long game with Asia generally, and is firmly committed to expanding its presence in the region.
Although not widely reported in the press, a number of Apple executives have accompanied Apple CEO Tim Cook on his five-day trip to India. Alongside newly-appointed head of Apple India Sanjay Kaul, Apple's COO Jeff Williams and Environmental VP Lisa Jackson have also been seen participating in events during the trip. Cook himself has taken time out to visit some cultural sites, including the Siddhivinayak Temple in Mumbai and a cricket game, while Jackson visited a school known in the region as "The Barefoot College."
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Cirrus creates Lightning-headphone dev kit
Apple supplier Cirrus Logic has introduced a MFi-compliant new development kit for companies interested in using Cirrus' chips to create Lightning-based headphones, which -- regardless of whether rumors about Apple dropping the analog headphone jack in its iPhone this fall -- can offer advantages to music-loving iOS device users. The kit mentions some of the advantages of an all-digital headset or headphone connector, including higher-bitrate support, a more customizable experience, and support for power and data transfer into headphone hardware. Several companies already make Lightning headphones, and Apple has supported the concept since June 2014. http://bit.ly/29giiZj
Apple Store app offers Procreate Pocket
The Apple Store app for iPhone, which periodically rewards users with free app gifts, is now offering the iPhone "Pocket" version of drawing app Procreate for those who have the free Apple Store app until July 28. Users who have redeemed the offer by navigating to the "Stores" tab of the app and swiping past the "iPhone Upgrade Program" banner to the "Procreate" banner have noted that only the limited Pocket (iPhone) version of the app is available free, even if the Apple Store app is installed and the offer redeemed on an iPad. The Pocket version currently sells for $3 on the iOS App Store. [32.4MB]
Porsche adds CarPlay to 2017 Panamera
Porsche has added a fifth model of vehicle to its CarPlay-supported lineup, announcing that the 2017 Panamera -- which will arrive in the US in January -- will include Apple's infotainment technology, and be seen on a giant 12.3-inch touchscreen as part of an all-new Porsche Communication Management system. The luxury sedan starts at $99,900 for the 4S model, and scales up to the Panamera Turbo, which sells for $146,900. Other vehicles that currently support CarPlay include the 2016 911 and the 2017 models of Macan, 718 Boxster, and 718 Cayman. The company did not mention support for Google's corresponding Android Auto in its announcement. http://bit.ly/295ZQ94
Apple employees testing wheelchair features
New features included in the forthcoming watchOS 3 are being tested by Apple retail store employees, including a new activity-tracking feature that has been designed with wheelchair users in mind. The move is slightly unusual in that, while retail employees have previously been used to test pre-release versions of OS X and iOS, this marks the first time they've been included in the otherwise developer-only watchOS betas. The company is said to have gone to great lengths to modify the activity tracker for wheelchair users, including changing the "time to stand" notification to "time to roll" and including two wheelchair-centric workout apps. http://bit.ly/2955JDa
SanDisk reveals two 256GB microSDXC cards
SanDisk has introduced two 256GB microSDXC cards. Arriving in August for $150, the Ultra microSDXC UHS-I Premium Edition card offers transfer speeds of up to 95MB/s for reading data. The Extreme microSDXC UHS-I card can read at a fast 100MB/s and write at up to 90MB/s, and will be shipping sometime in the fourth quarter for $200. http://bit.ly/294Q1If
Apple's third-quarter results due July 26
Apple has advised it will be issuing its third-quarter results on July 26, with a conference call to answer investor and analyst queries about the earnings set to take place later that day. The stream of the call will go live at 2pm PT (5pm ET) via Apple's investor site, with the results themselves expected to be released roughly 30 minutes before the call commences. Apple's guidance for the quarter put revenue at between $41 billion and $43 billion. http://apple.co/1oi1Pbm
Twitter stickers slowly roll out to users
Twitter has introduced "stickers," allowing users to add extra graphical elements to their photos before uploading them to the micro-blogging service. A library of hundreds of accessories, props, and emoji will be available to use as stickers, which can be resized, rotated, and placed anywhere on the photograph. Images with stickers will also become searchable with viewers able to select a sticker to see how others use the same graphic in their own posts. Twitter advises stickers will be rolling out to users over the next few weeks, and will work on both the mobile apps and through the browser. http://bit.ly/29bbwUE