In a surprising move, Apple has decided to increase the cost of its iPhones by up to 29% in India. The decision has come about after the failure of the iPhone SE in the country, having sold only a few thousand units.
The 4-inch iPhone SE has been criticized in India for being too expensive at Rs 39000, especially when considering the fact that the bigger iPhone 6 and 6S can be bought at around the same value. Apple has bizarrely decided to correct the cost of the latter two upwards in order to create a buffer.
The move seems to fly in the face of logic. India has always been a price-sensitive country and raising the cost of its portfolio is highly unlikely to drum up sales for the iPhone SE. Consumers here are probably reluctant to fork over such a high amount for a 4-inch smartphone when larger phones are available at much more affordable rates.
According to the Economic Times, the 16GB iPhone 6 will now be sold at Rs 40000 instead of Rs 31000, a 29% increase. Even the cost of the 6S has been raised by 19% from Rs 40500 to Rs 48000. Finally, the 5S is set to retail for Rs 22000, a 22% increase over its previous Rs 18000 value.
Apple is now hard at work trying to figure out how to pitch the iPhone SE more effectively in India. A lot depends on the country, with the handset itself meant for cost-conscious markets. However, increasing the cost of its devices here is not going to do it any favors, especially considering the fact that older phones usually drop in value over time, not rise.
UPDATE: Apple says it won’t be increasing the price of its iPhone series in India.