While not quantifying Apple's gains in India, the company has been able to post double digit sales and revenue growth in the country over the past four odd quarters. In October, the company reported that iPhone sales in the country were up 50 per cent in the 12 months that ended September.
On Monday, the Economic Survey showed that demonetisation had impacted the gross domestic product (GDP) growth in the financial year (FY) 2016-17, which dropped to 6.5 per cent from 7.6 per cent in previous FY. However, it also suggested that GDP growth would sharply rebound in the upcoming FY and is expected to be in the range of 6.75-7.5 per cent.
India is the last large open market in the world, with technology companies
from across the world flocking here. For Apple, India offers the promise to drive iPhone demand, which is seen as falling in developed markets such as USA and China, in the long term, though high price points will see the company operating in the fringes in the short term.
"We are in discussions on a number of things, including retail stores, and fully intend to invest significantly in the country and believe it's a great place to be," added Cook.
Apple controls less than 3 per cent of India's smartphone market and in order to grow the size of its pie in India, the company is setting up stores and is in talks to locally manufacture its devices. It's small size might suggest that there's plenty of headroom for growth but the company already has the second highest revenues among smartphone vendors in India.
This shows that India continues to remain a market for affordable smartphones with seven out of ten devices sold costing less than Rs 10,000. The premium smartphone market, categorised as Rs 35,000 and up (where Apple intends to compete), makes up just 4 per cent of the 100 million plus smartphones sold in the country during 2016.
While the iPhone continues to drive majority of Apple's sales in India (similar to other markets), the company said sales of its iPad and Mac computers too saw double digit growth during the quarter ended December. This is indicative that a growing base of iPhone users in the country are also buying into other parts of Apple's ecosystem.