"Also on the agenda is engaging with the government considering they have had their application turned down, for allowing to sell refurbished iPhones in India and pending application for opening fully owned Apple stores in India. So, it is really a multidimensional visit."
Apple requested to sell refurbished, cheaper phones in India, a request the government there rejected. The decision was a major setback for Apple that is looking to tap into the Indian market.
"Refurbished iPhones would have certainly given an opportunity to many aspirants to experience the Apple ecosystem without spending extravagantly and allow Apple to capture share in the price conscious market where 85 percent of smartphones sold are under $200," IDC's Singh told CNBC, adding that Apple enjoys huge aspirational brand value among Indian smartphone consumers. He says the market sometimes has seen a spike in sales of previous generation iPhones due to price cuts. "This helps in converting the aspirations of many consumers into purchase since it falls in their budget."
Apple faces tough competition in India against Samsung and Micromax thanks to their lower-priced smartphones. According to the IDC Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker, 23.5 million units of smartphones were shipped in India in Q1 2016 registering 5.2 percent growth over the same period last year. However, smartphone shipments shrank by 8.2 percent over Q4 2015, dipping consecutively for two quarters.
In an interview on CNBC's Mad Money with Jim Cramer earlier this month, Apple's Cook said India today has 50 percent of their population of 25 years of age or younger who want smartphones.
"It's a very young country. People really want smartphones there, really want smartphones. And this year, the first year, LTE begins to roll out. And so many of your viewers here in the United States, they're used to using LTE and streaming video. And hopefully they're getting a good experience there. In India you can't do that long – there is no LTE. And so that's changing. Huge market potential."
After a setback in its first-quarter results that showed the company's iPhone unit sales fell 16 percent year-on-year and a 26 percent fall in revenues from China, one of Apple's biggest markets, the company's leaders have resorted to charm offensive with its regional markets.
According to numbers from Counterpoint Research, a market intelligence firm, Apple sold nearly 2 million iPhones in India in 2015 and is likely to touch 3 million in 2016. Apple iPhone 5S contributed to 50 percent of the total sales in Q1 2016 which suggests that Apple's strategy in India is to discount its previous flagship handsets and position them as affordable.