There is bad news and good news coming from Cupertino, Calif.-based Apple. Its iPhone global sales have fallen by 16% in the quarter but sales in India have gone up by 56%. The company’s revenue dropped by 13% to $50.6 billion while profits slid by 22% to $10.5 billion for last quarter.

Apple CEO Tim Cook meets Prime Minister Narendra Modi
Apple CEO Tim Cook meets Prime Minister Narendra Modi

The Reason: the growth of iPhone sales in US and China — the technology giant’s two largest markets — slowed as these markets reached saturation forcing the company to turn to India for expanding its market.

iPhone sales in India saw an annual jump of 56%, said Tim Cook, CEO of Apple, in a call with investors to review Apple’s financial results.

Eyeing emerging markets like India, Apple released its most affordable smartphone yet, the 4-inch iPhone SE which is expected to make phone users switch over from Android to iPhone.

iPhone SE places the company in a better position to draw more customers.

But slow networks and informal retail structures across India are preventing the company from realizing its full potential. Faster networks will unleash the power and capability of the iPhone in a manner that older networks like the 2.5G or even some 3G networks would not do.

So infrastructure is one key. Changes are in the offing with the coming of better network connectivity and faster data speeds at lower cost. Reliance Jio has invested close to $17 billion to set up its 4G infrastructure in the hope of becoming the largest data provider in the country.

The coming of quality 4G networks will unleash the power of iPhone in the the country and increase sales further.

Cook is positive about India’s growth.

“It is already the third largest smartphone market in the world … But I view India as where China was maybe seven to ten years ago from that point of view, and I think there’s a really great opportunity there,” he said.

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