After Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi launched its Mi5 phone at the Mobile World Congress, Xiaomi’s president Lin Bin said it will be mass produced within two months.
As Xiaomi’s major product of 2016, the Mi5 is different from its earlier flagship products the Mi3 and Mi4. Lin told the Tech channel of Tencent in an interview on Thursday that if the Mi5 is being sold on a large scale, the company can transition from its scarcity-based strategy, or “hunger marketing”.
After edging out Samsung to become the market leader in China, Xiaomi has entered its Version 2.0, which means it is adopting an open sales strategy, rather than driving sales through scarcity. This will gradually lead the company into the e-commerce field. Xiaomi CEO Lei Jun has repeatedly expressed his desire to turn Xiaomi into a Chinese version of Amazon.
“Xiaomi will put more emphasis on its product quality as a regular e-commerce company,” Lin said. “and it will hurt consumers if the products we sell them are not mature. In designing the Mi5, Xiaomi first considered product quality and stability, and only on that premise can we consider mass production.”
“Exploration of cutting-edge technology” has gradually become Xiaomi’s main direction in 2016 since Lei made a New Year’s resolution to “explore boldly and enjoy the process” at Xiaomi’s annual meeting.
With the release of the Mi5, “exploration of cutting-edge technology” has become Xiaomi’s new brand concept, as important as “just for fans”. For instance, the release date of the Xiaomi Mi5 was pushed back repeatedly so that the company could achieve a flat-backed 4-axis optical image stabilizer camera. This has yet to be realized on other phones.
What comes in the wake of the transformation is more emphasis on offline experience.
“Why would I choose a RMB 2699 (USD 413) phone when I can get a Huawei at a bit over RMB 2000?” Lin asked. “Offline experience, that’s the answer. We must make sure our offline experience is always there and accessible to consumers.”
In September, Xiaomi opened up its retail store as part of Xiaomi’s ‘Mi Family’ in Beijing’s tech district. Xiaomi has also set up its second store near its headquarters and more retail stores in other cities in China.
(Top photo from Xiaomi.com.)