Google Pixel Phones May Be Assembled in India Amid China Lockdowns, US Tensions: Report

Google Pixel smartphones may be assembled in India in the future, according to a report. Apparently, Google has solicited bids from manufacturers in India to make a part of the company’s estimated annual production of the Pixel smartphones. Google is reportedly planning to shift Pixel phone assembly from China due COVID-19 lockdowns in the country that have hit manufacturing and supply chains. Another reason highlighted for this shift in manufacturing is rising geopolitical tensions between China and the US. Google becomes the second major company after Apple looking at India as an alternate production hub.

A report by The Information (via Reuters) cited a person with direct knowledge of the discussions as saying that Google has solicited bids from manufacturers in India to make between 5,00,000 and 1 million Pixel smartphones. These numbers represent 10 percent to 20 percent of the estimated annual production for Google’s Pixel smartphones.

The reasons cited for moving some of its Pixel smartphone production outside China are the country’s COVID-19 lockdowns that have disrupted manufacturing and supply chains and rising geopolitical tensions with the US after a trip by US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi to Taiwan earlier this year.

It is not known what models of Pixel smartphones Google wants to assemble in India. The last flagships that Google sold in India were the Pixel 3 series of smartphones. Google skipped Pixel 4 series but brought the mid-ranger Pixel 4a, skipped Pixel 5 series as well as Pixel 5a, and again launched only the premium Pixel 6a in the country skipping the flagship Pixel 6 series entirely. The company is set to launch the Pixel 7 series on October 6.

Google has become the second major manufacturer after Apple which is mulling shifting a part of its smartphone production to India. The Cupertino company is also reportedly planning to use its manufacturing lines in the country to supplement iPhone 14 production in China amid geopolitical issues and disrupted economic activity due to COVID-19 restrictions in the country.

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