The Chinese company, Xiaomi, has been in the news recently for several reasons and they can add one more as their first Red Rice (Hongmi) smartphone, a mid-range model, sold out its 100,000 devices in four minutes on the internet, which is the only way you can purchase a Xiaomi product. Last month they released a flagship device, the Mi-3, and sold out the 100,000 devices in less than a minute and a half! Their phones use the Android Operating System, but is heavily skinned and customized by Xiaomi. They aim to sell a high quality product at a reasonable price – the Red Rice smartphone sold for only $130 and included:
- 4.7-inch 720p display
- 1.5GHz Quad-Core MediaTek Processor
- 1GB of RAM
- 8MP Camera
The other reason Xiaomi has been in the news is because they have been called the Apple of China, although they prefer to think of themselves as the Amazon of China. They want to sell directly to the customer, at a competitive price, and then make their real money with add-ons, such as software and supplies.
Xiaomi's Founder and CEO, Lei Jun, has also been called "China's Steve Jobs," because of his innovative ideas and forward way of thinking. His company listens to its customers, incorporates the good ideas into changes in their smartphone design and then makes batches of 100,000, allowing them the opportunity to continually make changes and improvements for the next batch of devices.
Another reason Xiaomi has been in the news is that Hugo Barra, quit his high profile job at Google, Vice President of product Management, to become Vice President of Xiaomi Global – with emphasis on the word "global." Right now Xiaomi only sells their devices in China, but that too will change in the future as Barra works out a plan for expansion beyond the borders of China. He Google+'d about the speed in which Xiaomi operates and how it was unlike anything he had seen before.
Xiaomi may soon become a household name if their popularity and reputation for high quality products at reasonable prices can continue. Their devices sell out in a few minutes on their website and they are looking pretty good as far as specs go and with Hugo Barra believing they are using Android to its fullest, who knows when we will see their devices in the U.S.
Let us know in the comments or on Google+ what you think of their methods and can they make an impact in the U.S.