India has a middle class larger than the population of the United
States. That's ~400 million people with the combined purchasing
power to swing major markets. The fixed-line phone system is terrible
across much of the nation. The mobile phone market there is
incredible, even the nearly 1 billion very poor local villagers have
access to mobile phones through community phone-sharing shops. They
pool their rupees together so they can have contact with relatives
working overseas in the Middle East and West. Farmers check market
prices by cell phone before taking crops to market. They will easily
buy 1 crore iPhones in the first twelve months, that is if Indian tech
firms don't come out with something more powerful than the iPhone
between now and then!
Once the Bollywood movie stars start carrying iPhones there will be no
stopping the trend-conscious nouveau riche from buying them. Of course
iPhones will still be too expensive for the average Sanjay on the
street. It's the people working at Infosys, WiPro, Reliance and other
major firms that can afford the such a device. Many Mumbai & Delhi
traders and business people already carry smartphones. When those
phones wear out, as electronic devices quickly do in that climate,
more than a few Indians will switch to the feature-rich iPhone just
like they switch from scooters to cars every day.
I can also see NRIs financing more than a few iPhone purchases for
didi, baba, ma, and the rest of the family back in Kolkatta.
There has been plenty of talk about the Apple
tie-up with Reliance. That's how things get done in India.
You can also rest assured computer technicians in India will race to
get certified to support all types of users of all Mac hardware. The
"missing network" of enterprise-level systems integrators willing to
suggest Apple hardware here in the U.S. may well be replaced by
entrepreneurs from the Indian subcontinent.
They seem to ramp-up faster with technology but who knows? WiPro just
expanded their presence in the U.S. with a major purchase in New
Too much attention has been paid to Steve Jobs IMHO. As interesting as
Steve is the Apple juggernaut is hardly sailed by a single sailor.
There are brilliant minds at work in Cupertino but I sincerely believe
that it is the way Apple Inc. management and other staff use all those
"ears" working at Infinite Loop, in the stores, and other locations. I
think Apple Inc. simply listens more closely to their customers,
vendors, college students, and other potential new users of their
products...it really shows.
Here's your source: