Apple plans three India retail stores before the end of 2017

Apple will open three retail stores in India before the end of 2027, reports FactorDaily, quoting an unnamed “source familiar with the decision.” The retail stores will reportedly open in Delhi, Bangalore and Mumbai within the the next 18 months.

According to the report, each Apple Store will be spread across 10,000 square feet and will be located at high street locations of the three cities. The stores, for which Apple executives are searching for real estate, will need an investment of $3 million to $5 million (Rs20 crore to Rs33 crore) each. 

FactorDaily — an India-based tech news site — also claims that Apple will also unveil a start-up accelerator in India, the first such initiative by the company, to incubate ideas mostly around applications built for iOS. The announcement will be made later this week, when Apple CEO Tim Cook visits India, the article adds.

In January Apple India filed an application to open Apple branded retail stores in India with the department of industrial policy and promotion (DIPP). Getting a foothold in India has been a challenge for the company. Apple has opened its retail stores in a number of countries around the world, but not in India. The country has restrictive real estate investment laws for foreign companies.

In other Apple retail news, Apple’s new Union Square store in San Francisco will open on May 21 at 10 a.m. Pacific time, while the shop's predecessor will shut down the night before, reports AppleInsider. The Stockton Street location will cease operations after its normal 9 p.m. closing time on May 20, Apple said. 

Its replacement, at 300 Post Street, will open its doors at 10 a.m. on Saturday and then switch to the same hours as Stockton — from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Sundays. The Union Square outlet has been in planning for years, with construction finally starting in June 2015.

The company has 481 retail stores in 18 countries and an online store available in 39 countries.