It is almost impossible these days to get through a tech news day without hearing Xiaomi mentioned. The company is still unknown to a lot of users and yet have seen an almost meteoric rise to fame. It sounds strange that a company can be so well known while also being unknown and yet Xiaomi are exactly that, in terms of the average user. That is the average international user. In China, however, they are known. Very well known in fact. So much so that they are the number one smartphone manufacturer in China which is one of the reasons their global ranking has increased so much in spite of their products not being so widely known or available in other markets.
With such dominance in China, you would expect a number of cloned devices to be on sale. China generally seems to be a clone central for all things electronic and as such, the idea of cloned Xiaomi devices seems like a given. That said, it seems the cloning of Xiaomi is so widespread that it is actually been taken to the next level. Not only are devices being cloned, but entire stores are being cloned. In fact, it seems the cloning of entire Xiaomi stores is such an issue that Xiaomi CEO, Lei Jun has publicly warned people to the extent of the fake stores and advising not to buy from them.
According to the reports, these imitation stores are complete with Xiaomi signage, Xiaomi uniformed staff and to all purposes, seem like the real deal. They have been noted in many cities including Huaqiang, Shenzhen, Houjie, Dongguan (to name only a few). What's more, if you are based in China and are wondering if your local Xiaomi store is a fake then the short answer is yes. Jun on his Weibo account, has publicly declared that they actually have no physical stores themselves and instead rely on their online stores for sales. As such, potential buyers are being heavily warned that any device picked up from any of these imitation stores are almost certainly going to be fake devices. So, you might want to make sure the next Xiaomi device you buy from, is from an online store and one directly affiliated with Xiaomi.