WHAT IS XIAOMI?
Headquartered in China, Xiaomi is an electronics company founded by Lei Jun in 2010. The company deals in consumer electronics products — from smartphones to tablets, notebooks, televisions, smart bulbs, wearables, and other ecosystem products like routers, safety cameras, action cameras, umbrellas, etc. Primarily an internet company, Xiaomi also has its own digital payment app Mi Pay, besides several other internet services that are integral part of the company’s Android-based MIUI operating system.
Xiaomi started its India operations in 2014 under the leadership of its country managing director Manu Kumar Jain, one of the co-founders of online apparel store Jabong. In 2015, the company launched its first India-centric smartphone, the Mi 4i. However, the company’s success story started with the launch of the Redmi and the Redmi Note series of smartphones. In 2018, Xiaomi became the top smartphone manufacturer in the country, exceeding Samsung in four straight quarters.
Besides smartphones, Xiaomi also offers value-added internet services in India through its MIUI operating system. In 2018, the company launched the Mi Music and Mi Videos apps, which come pre-installed in all Xiaomi smartphones. Both these apps play content stored in the phone’s internal storage and also stream content from partner platforms using the internet. The company’s digital payments app Mi Pay uses the unified payment interface (UPI) for transactions.
Apart from smartphones and internet-based products, the company also sells wearables, smart bulbs, shoes, backpacks, luggage bags, umbrellas, and air purifiers in India. Though the company started as an online brand, it has gradually expanded to the offline space for last-mile connectivity. The company also has its biggest offline experience store in Bengaluru, called Mi Home. The store has put on display all the products that the company has designed and developed so far.