Apple will enter into a long-term partnership with Reliance Jio, which owns the all India 4G LTE license, according to a report in The Economic Times.
The ET report says that the terms of the agreement between the two companies include supplying a couple of million VoLTE iPhones that will work on Reliance Jio’s upcoming 4G network as well as deploying an enterprise solution, developed by the Cupertino-headquartered company and IBM, for Reliance Retail.
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Reliance executives, in a sales pitch that caught Apple’s attention, talked about how Apple can play a big role in Jio’s growth and how bundling of iPhones with its data service will make a compelling proposition for consumers, boosting the penetration of iPhones in the country.
The presentation included information on how Reliance Jio plans to revolutionize mobile broadband in India.
Sources say that the agreement has Tim Cook’s nod in principle.
According to the ET report: Reliance is keen to sell these bundled iPhones through its own sales and distribution network covering 1.2 lakh retailers and e-commerce firms and hence wants to forge a direct sourcing relationship with Apple.
Apple is trying to push its business in India amid several regulations restricting it. Ten years after the iPhone was launched in India, the Cupertino-headquartered company has not been able to open a retail outlet in the country because regulations require at least 30 per cent of the goods in the store to be sourced locally.
Apple’s request to sell affordable, refurbished devices in India has also been rejected by the Indian Government.
On the first day of Cook’s visit, Apple announced plans to set up a design and development accelerator in Bengaluru, which will provide specialised support to iOS app developers in India.