This forced Apple to raise the prices of imported iPhone units by 6% to 7% in India this year.
Despite producing iPhone 6s locally, Apple will have to import units of the handset for now as well until the production capacity improves. A year later, the company has now started producing iPhone 6s in the country as well with the help of its contract manufacturer Wistron.
"As we approach the upcoming iPhone cycle, investors are asking whether (average selling prices) will come under pressure given news reports that Apple will be more price sensitive with the iPhone line-up launching in September 2018", Huberty wrote in a research report.
Unfortunately, price drops on the iPhone 6s won't happen immediately. However, the production hasn't started at full swing, which means that Apple is still importing a considerable amount of iPhone 6s units from its worldwide manufacturing facilities. It has now set up two new lines in the same facility to produce iPhone 6s.
Counterpoint said Apple's share in the premium segment dipped in the January-March quarter due to a decline in shipments for iPhone 8 and X series, and the increase in duty on smartphones imported in completely built stage, which led to an increase in prices of the already expensive iPhones. The third model is unidentified, but it is likely the iPhone 6s Plus.
Locally produced iPhone units not only aren't subject to the country's import tax, they aren't charged customs duty. The iPhone 6 series makes up 33% of iPhone sales in India compared to 15% for the iPhone SE. "He also expects Apple to release at least three new iPhone models in 2018. i.e. a second-generation iPhone X, a larger 6.5" version referred to as the "iPhone X Plus", and a 6.1" budget version of iPhone X. The iPhone 6 series now accounts for about one-third of the iPhone sales in India as compared to the 15 percent generated by the iPhone SE.
Apple had hiked the prices of its iPhone twice in the last seven months as the government had increased the customs duty. The current iPhone X, introduced on September 12 past year, costs $1,000 with a 5.8-inch OLED screen, Apple's first use of the higher-contrast display technology. While the Indian manufactured iPhone SE, which carries the same specifications with a smaller screen is priced at Rs 20,000.