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May 26, 2017

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Xiaomi releases Mi 6, speeds up offline expansion

A seven-year-old Chinese smartphone vendor, Xiaomi, has recently released its six-generation flagship device, Mi 6. The latest model was unveiled in Beijing on Wednesday, and will stay firm in the country's increasingly competitive market. A representative of the company said it would open 1,000 offline retail stores in first and second tier cities, in a bid to make all products more accessible.

Lei Jun, founder of Xiaomi, said the Mi 6 was the first Chinese-made handset to be equipped with a Snapdragon 835 processor, along with the help of Qualcomm.

He added the Mi 6 features include a 6G RAM, dual camera, curved glasses on all four edges and a stainless bezel.

He said the Mi 6 was also water-proof and can protect eyes with its special screen. The Mi 6 also has the 4-pixel optical anti-vibration function, which exists on Mi 5 but does not show up on Mi 5s due to cost considerations.

The updated release was in response to the consumers' wants and needs, Lei said.

"The Mi 6 is a product with extreme attention to detail, showcasing Xiaomi's endless exploration," he said.

Lei went on to give special credit to the engineers involved and said without innovation, Xiaomi, a startup company with a staff of about a dozen, would not have survived.

"In the past seven years, hundreds of smartphone manufactures have lost and disappeared," he said.

In addition to technological breakthroughs, the company have found the business model transformation a complete success.

Lei said the company succeeded in cost control, enabling the same product to be sold at the same price as their online peers.

Jin Di, a research manager with IDC China, said the Mi 6, however, was not on par with industry-wide expectations, especially on the backdrop of the Mi Mix – a trend-setter on all-screen devices.

She added this was not only a difficult time for Xiaomi but for other Chinese vendors as break-throughs were increasingly hard to make.

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