New flagship revealed by Xiaomi, Chinese singer named brand ambassador in order to boost sales in China
Xiaomi has taken up 29% of the Indian smartphone market, which is the second largest in the world, claiming the first place previously held by Samsung in 2018.
Xiaomi is the #4 smartphone manufacturer in the world, and this week the company named a young Chinese singer and actor is brand ambassador along with the launch of a mid-to-high-end model. This step is expected to boost the drooping sales figures in the super-competitive domestic Chinese market.
The Mi 9 model, which costs upwards of 2,999 yuan (US$444) is the first Xiaomi device that will be launched since the company transformed its budget Redmi line into a stand-alone brand in January 2019, a step that has empowered it to pursue the premium segment of the market.
Xiaomi CEO and Chairman Lei Jun reported that the price was set after a major discussion within the company, and was originally at a higher level (3,299 yuan). He also informed that it took several sleepless nights prior to coming to the final decision.
There’s also a model with a see-through back at a price of 3,999 yuan.
Xiaomi established a Poco sub-brand in India, where the company had taken the top spot away from Samsung last year. It now has a 29% of the Indian market, which is currently the second largest in the world, as recent reports indicate.
Lei Jun also revealed an exclusive collaboration with Douyin, a trendy Chinese short video app, which would allow Mi9 owners to use filters and the super-wide panoramic camera in order to improve their videos.
While its Indian segment is on the rise, Xiaomi’s domestic business in China is not a particularly good shape, with an over 34% drop in Q4 2018.
The step Xiaomi took to name the popular Chinese singer Wang Yuan its brand ambassador, in fact, followed similar moves by Huawei, which engaged TFBoys band member Yiyang Qianxi, and by Oppo, which named another member of the same band Wang Jukai, in their marketing campaigns.
Chinese market is heavily saturated, and Xiaomi put together a new China team to enhance its operations there.
While the amount that Wang was paid for his endorsement of Xiaomi’s products remains a mystery, it should in any case pay off, since the number of adoring fans willing to follow his recommendations is very high.
At the end of the press conference, Lei Jun informed that Mi 9 may be the last flagship model to be priced under 3,000 yuan.
Another piece of news regarding Lei Jun this week is that he is interested in traveling into the outer space, as he revealed in a discussion with the American film director James Cameron, who was in China promoting Alita: Battle Angel, his most recent film.
“Of course, I want to [explore outer space]. Some of my friends have already set up satellite and rocket companies, and I want to participate in the cause to march into outer space,” stated Lei in his blog post after the discussionSource