Mobile Commerce

Xiaomi Takes On Apple With New, Cheaper Smartphone

The smartphone share battle in China just got a bit tougher for Apple as Xiaomi — one of China’s top smartphone suppliers — launched its newest smartphone, the Mi 4c.

It’s selling for $200 — a reduced price from its signature Mi 4 smartphone. And much like smartphone programs in the U.S., Xiaomi has also rolled out prepaid packages to entice its Chinese consumer base. This new phone has a 5-inch display (a size in between Apple’s iPhone 6 and 6 Plus) and it comes with a 64-bit processor.

Just like Apple’s smartphone rollouts, Xiaomi’s come with various storage sizes that cost between $203-$235; a new software upgrade is also expected to hit the market soon. This new phone is available now and can be bought online at Mi.com.

For the first half of 2015, Xiaomi has dominated China’s smartphone market, with 34.7 million being sold in the first half to China alone. Despite strong growth, the company has projected some slowdown in its sales during the latter part of 2015.

During the summer it was announced that Xiaomi was working to grow its patent portfolio and also complete more strategic deals in preparation for a move into the U.S. market. The company’s CEO, Hugo Barra, said that those strategic initiatives are laying the groundwork for movement into both the U.S. and Europe.

Xiaomi also recently announced the timing of its official arrival in Africa, slated for this month, along with the appointment of a distributor.

As Forbes reported, Africa has held the top spot as the fastest growing mobile region for the last five years, with Q1 smartphone sales increasing to 47 percent. With such a huge market opportunity, Xiaomi’s launch in the continent was long awaited.

Xiaomi has hired Mobile in Africa Limited as its distributor throughout the 50 countries that constitute sub-Saharan Africa.

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