Apple Renews Interest in India with iPhone 3GS, iPad
One of the world's most populous nations is getting the latest version of the world's most popular smartphone. This weekend, the two largest carriers in the nation, Bharti Airtel and Vodafone, revealed the launch of the iPhone 3GS in India. The iPhone, however, isn't the only well-known smartphone to get a big push in a new part of the world. The BlackBerry Storm2 is also being rolled out for Indian consumers.
Traditionally Apple has - to put it bluntly - largely ignored India. Famously, India's App Store was once down for just over two weeks before the good people at Apple resolved the issue that caused the crash. But in the wake of the iPad's announcement, it seems Apple has taken a new interest in India and, consequently, revamped its business strategy in that part of the world.
In addition to the iPhone 3GS (finally) arriving in India as of two days ago, the iPad is scheduled for an Indian launch in the coming weeks. Shortly after the tablet was announced in January, Google Trends revealed one of the most prevalent search patterns to ever originate from India as a result of a massive chunk of the Indian population inquiring about the new tablet computer. Now that India is showing an interest like never before in Apple, it seems Apple is poised to return the favor.
Shortly after the tablet's late-January introduction, The Financial Times
published an article stating that the iPad "will have very little impact in India," suggesting that the device would only find "niche adoption as a lifestyle device for surfing the internet and watching high-definition videos."
Then again, since late January, the buzz in India over the iPad has only increased. And as Apple shows signs of renewed interest in the region, it's quite possible that India could be so enamored of the device that, contrary to what some believe, demand for the iPad could substantially eat into the sales of traditional PCs and laptops in the region.
I guess we'll find out soon enough.