Tag: Xiaomi

Xiaomi mobile technology looks to Indian start-ups

The tech company from China is seeking new investments and partnerships within India’s market.

The Xiaomi mobile tech company recently entered a partnership with the Mobikwik mobile wallet. It gave them access to 1 million device users in India who were using the free SMS-based mobile payment service. It is now becoming clear that this is only one of the first steps Xiaomi is taking into the Indian marketplace.

The technology company is now looking to invest in startups while also forming local partnerships.

The goal is to build a strong ecosystem surrounding Xiaomi mobile products in India. The Chinese tech company currently sells a range of different products in India, including smartphones, tablets, Bluetooth accessories, fitness bands and power banks. That said, the television launch may require additional time. The reason, says the company’s head in India, Manu Jain, is that Xiaomi has not yet completed its content strategy.

Still, the Xiaomi mobile investments in India have been growing rapidly, particularly among startups.

Xiaomi Mobile - Mobile Technology in IndiaBack in April, the firm invested in Hungama Digital Media Entertainment. That was an important move toward establishing an Indian foundation, said Jain. Xiaomi was a leader in the $25 million round of investments into that business. It represented the first time Xiaomi invested in any startups within the Indian market.

As a result of this investment, Xiaomi device users will have free access to 2 Hungama premium apps for three months and for one year. Those apps are Hungama Play and Hungama Music, respectively.

More recently the company linked up with One Mobikwik Systems Pvt. Ltd., a mobile wallet business. Through that partnership, one million of the company’s device users will have access to that mobile payments system for free.

If the situation in the company’s home country is any indication, there could be a great deal more to come. In China, it has already incubated or invested in 55 content and hardware startup businesses. Among them have been those that have developed a broad range of offerings. These include everything from air and water purifiers to drones. They also include complementary software and content development.

Of the 55 companies, 20 have already launched a product. Four have managed to achieve a valuation of $1 billion – also known as unicorn status – following the Xiaomi mobile investment.

Apple’s grasp on the mobile device market in China plummets

Local rivals have been heading up-market while Samsung offers consumers an unbeatable price.

Apple experienced some disappointing news from the mobile device market in China. During the third quarter, the iPhone maker saw a 29 percent drop in revenue compared to the second quarter.

Apple’s revenues from China also saw a surprising drop by a huge 33 percent year over year.

Third financial quarter 2015 revenues had been $13.2 billion in the Chinese mobile device market. This year during the same quarter, there has been a plummet to a much lower $8.8 billion. Tim Cook, CEO of Apple, blamed the slowing growth of the country’s economy as a primary reason for the nosedive in revenues.

Apple had once held the coveted place as the “it” brand in the Chinese mobile device market.

Mobile Device Market China - Chinese FlagHowever, local mobile device companies have been placing a massive focus on their brand image efforts. This has allowed many of them to grow from the level of cheap basic phone to upmarket premium smartphone models.

Among the top threats Apple is facing within the mobile phone marketplace in China is Xiaomi. That company has managed to clone a broad spectrum of Apple’s features, designs and even its marketing approach. It has been making every effort to replicate the appeal of Apple while knocking the pins out of the iPhone maker’s position at the same time.

In fact, it raced to replicate two anticipated upcoming iPhone features – that is, the dual cameras and OLED displays. Xiaomi then launched that device on the same day Apple was to announce its drooping revenue results. At the same time, Xiaomi has been working to appeal to the Chinese market to proudly buy local. It has strategically placed a series of billboard ads in the country calling its devices the “Made-in-China smartphones.” This, despite the fact that the majority of iPhones are, in fact, made in China as well.

That said, the Wall Street Journal identified another problem Apple is facing in the mobile phone market in China. Both Oppo and Huawei have launched attractive new premium smartphones to take on the iPhone. They have successfully given consumers another choice of high end device with a more affordable price tag. Following this successful positioning, they have been able to take a slice out of Apple, so to speak.

The American company now holds fifth place in the Chinese smartphone marketplace, behind Huawei, Oppo, Vivo and Xiaomi. Samsung is rapidly approaching by offering its devices with competitive pricing.