Apple may soon be slugging it out in the trenches with Samsung and other smartphone rivals as India country head Maneesh Dhir and telecom business chief Sanjay Kaul seek a rapid increase in the pace of growth in India, a market that it has neglected until recently. While the iPhone has always been an object of desire, Apple wasn`t able to make a big dent in India because of pricing issues peculiar to this country - handsets aren`t subsidised by contracts as in other parts of the world. Until recently, this was taken to mean that Apple wasn`t really interested in pushing sales in the world`s largest mobile market after China, while companies such as Samsung have pitched their products hard in India. Samsung leads the India smartphone market with a 36% volume share, according to research firm Canalys, while Apple`s was 2% in the April-June quarter. Apple`s value share is higher at 5%, it said. To their credit though, Dhir and Kaul have tried to work around their constraints by offering iPhones and other devices on installment, tapping a considerable vein of pent-up demand. Dhir and Kaul are now putting the next piece of their strategy in place. Apple wants to enter smaller Indian cities and towns with iPhones, iPads and iPods as it feels these markets can deliver on its bid to grow fast.