Google Pixel Phones Will Now Be Manufactured In Tamil Nadu, In Talks With iPhone-Maker Foxconn

Google is reportedly in advanced discussions with Foxconn, the manufacturer of Apple iPhones, to commence local production of its Pixel smartphones in Tamil Nadu, in a bid to expand its footprint in the Indian smartphone market. Sources familiar with the matter revealed this development to Moneycontrol.

While details regarding the investment size, rollout timeline, and potential job creation remain undisclosed, reports suggest that Google is also in talks with Dixon, a local contract manufacturer, for the production of Pixel smartphones within the country.

Drones Plant In Tamil Nadu As Well?

The move by the tech giant comes as it aims to capitalise on the increasing demand for premium smartphones in India, the world’s second-largest smartphone market. Additionally, Alphabet, Google’s parent company, is set to initiate the production of drones in the state through its subsidiary, Wing LLC.

This move aligns with the firm’s existing drone delivery service, operational in the United States, Europe, and Australia, utilising lightweight, autonomous delivery drones.

A delegation from Tamil Nadu, led by State Industry Minister TRB Rajaa and other officials, recently held discussions with Google executives in the United States, indicating the seriousness of the proposed collaboration.

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Google Takes On Apple In Terms Of Localisation

This development mirrors the aggressive localisation efforts of Google’s rival, Apple, which has significantly ramped up the production of iPhones in India. According to a Bloomberg report, Apple has assembled iPhones worth $14 billion in the country during fiscal 2024, representing about 14 per cent of its global production.

Google had initially announced its intention to locally manufacture Pixel smartphones in India, starting with the Pixel 8 and Pixel 8 Pro models, in October 2023. The company aims to enhance the availability of Pixel smartphones across the country, with the first devices expected to hit the market in 2024.

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Tamil Nadu On The Rise

Furthermore, Google’s move underscores Tamil Nadu’s emergence as a prominent manufacturing hub. The state already hosts a significant portion of Apple’s manufacturing ecosystem, with Foxconn, Pegatron, and Tata operating within its borders.

Notably, Google had previously partnered with PC maker HP to manufacture Chromebooks at a Flex facility in Chennai, catering primarily to the education sector’s demand for affordable PCs.

Tamil Nadu currently leads in electronics exports, accounting for nearly a third of national exports, with total exports valued at $9.56 billion.