Everyone’s heard of Apple and Samsung, after all their handsets are ubiquitous, but how many of you have heard about Xiaomi? Not many, unless you happen to live in certain parts of Asia or are closely following recent tech news. But the relatively unknown upstart says it’ll outgrow both Samsung and Apple in the next decade.
That’s a very confident battle cry coming from the company’s founder and CEO Lei Jun, who was talking on stage at China’s World Internet Conference. Lei Jun explained his vision for his company thusly:
I believe that no one thought the Xiaomi from three years ago, which just made its first phone, would later rank as the third largest player. India is becoming our largest overseas market. Within five or 10 years, we have the opportunity to become the number one smartphone company in the world.
Despite its lack of mindshare in the west, Xiaomi did indeed become the world’s third largest smartphone manufacturer back in Q3 of this year. However that title may have been short-lived as Motorola and Lenovo teaming up will likely push Xiaomi further down the list.
But how exactly is the company planning to take on the likes of Apple and Samsung? Volume growth and territorial expansion apparently. The company has seen tremendous growth across parts of Asia and if it can replicate that in other parts of the world it may indeed become a very serious player in this market.
However that’s a huge if. The company has razor-slim profit margins and will be getting squeezed by competitors left and right. Plus there’s no guarantee that the western world will actually take to the company’s products as quickly as Asian markets seem to have.
And let’s forget the fact that the original iPhone, that shook the smartphone markets, only came out seven years ago. So for a small company to claim it’ll still be around in a decade when it’s running so close to the edge feels more like idealism or attention-seeking than a serious business plan.
Source: The Guardian | Image via Xiaomi.com
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