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Lei Jun denies Xiaomi copied MUJI on rice cooker

After Xiaomi launched a smart rice cooker and changed the name of their smart home ecosystem last week, Xiaomi CEO Lei Jun took to Weibo to dismiss claims that their smart home ecosystem’s name was copied from Japanese lifestyle brand MUJI.

“Someone said MIJIA is copying a Japanese brand. They are MUJI, we are MIJIA. Speechless…” Lei wrote.

Lei Jun’s Weibo post.

He added that MIJIA, the new name for Xiaomi’s smart home ecosystem, comes from Chinese Pinyin. Only a few of the characters match MUJI. But this was only a coincidence.

Lei Jun said at the launch last week that he wanted to make a rice cooker that can compete with the Japanese ones and beat them, at a lower price.

After the launch, netizens said the Xiaomi rice cooker looks like MUJI’s and posted photos to compare the two products. 

Photos provided by netizens.

“Look, our product designer has also posted photos of the two rice cookers to show how different they look. It’s more about what angle the photos were taken at,” Sun Peng, MIJIA’s director of product planning responded.

He added that MUJI’s rice cooker is not an induction heating pressure rice cooker, and costs RMB 770 less than Xiaomi’s.

Photo from Xiaomi.

Sun also commented on Lei Jun’s recent Weibo post, saying “[Are you] advertising for MUJI? Did you forget about IKEA? Its Chinese name Yijia is more similar to MIJIA.”

Chinese media outlets have also released videos testing the Xiaomi rice cooker’s functions, questioning whether Xiaomi has exaggerated its non-stick function. As of now, Xiaomi has yet to respond to these issues.

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