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Apple manufacturer Foxconn may start building iPhones in India

A move could help Foxconn lower its manufacturing costs, though Apple customers won't likely see those savings.

Foxconn could bring production of Apple devices to India. Apple

The back of your iPhone may soon read "Assembled in India."

Foxconn, the Chinese manufacturer that assembles Apple devices such as the iPhone and iPad, could be opening a new plant in India, according to Reuters. Foxconn will scout out a location in a month, Subhash Desai, Industries Minister of India's western state Maharashtra, told Reuters.

This move could lead to cheaper manufacturing costs for Foxconn, the world's largest contract manufacturer of electronic products, as well as wider availability of products at a time when Apple is finding it tough to meet demand. It's also a way to potentially mitigate the rising labor costs in China, though those savings likely won't be passed down to consumers.

"If you were Apple, you'd want to maintain those higher prices" to keep the prestige of a higher-class brand, said Ramon Llamas, an analyst at market research firm IDC.

Apple and Foxconn did not respond to a request for comment.

This wouldn't be the first time that Foxconn operated out of India. The company previously operated in that country manufacturing phones for Nokia, the mobile-devices business that was acquired by Microsoft last year.

India has become an increasingly popular manufacturing hub for electronics, with a large pool of workers with technical know-how, Llamas said. Still, it lags behind China as a go-to place for electronics manufacturing.

For Apple, a local manufacturing presence might provide a boost to its image in India, where the high price of its products make it a challenge for many consumers there. For instance, the base model of the iPhone 6 sells for around 44,000 rupees ($687.82) in India, according to Reuters.

As a result, local companies such as Micromax have thrived building more affordable smartphones utilizing Google's Android operating system.

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