In an exclusive interview with Android Authority a few weeks ago in Jakarta, Xiaomi’s International VP and former Googler Hugo Barra talked in great lengths about Xiaomi’s international expansion plans and strategy.
Barra emphasized that “Xiaomi will always be an online first company”, as the company believes that’s the best way to reach its primary consumers, which are people who live and breathe the Internet.
The Flipkart deal is an example of Xiaomi's ecosystem friendly approach
In our interview, Barra also mentioned that Xiaomi will take an “ecosystem friendly approach” when entering new markets. If that sounded like a vague term to you, today we have an example of how this approach plays out in real life.
Xiaomi previously announced that it would start taking pre-orders for the Mi 3 in India on Tuesday, July, 15. Now local online retailer Flipkart just announced that it will be selling the Mi 3 exclusively in the country.
This is a glimpse to the ecosystem friendly approach that Barra has hinted at. Flipkart has been successful as the exclusive retail channel for the Moto G, E, and X in India. As it’s entering one of the world’s largest markets, Xiaomi is prudently using an established retail partner instead of doing everything on its own. This allows it to maintain its online-first DNA, and at the same time to minimize potential risks associated with a massive launch.
That online-first philosophy, by the way, is one of the cornerstones that allows Xiaomi to maintain its well-known aggressive pricing scheme. The Mi 3 packs a 5-inch 1080p screen with 2GB of RAM and Snapdragon 800 power, and it will be offered in India for less than $250.
Another tactic that lets Xiaomi sell products at extremely low price points is producing phones in limited batches to avoid inventory build up. In Barra’s words, “instead of producing large quantities of devices every six months, we produce small quantities all the time”.
Barra: Instead of producing in large quantities every six months, we produce in small quantities all the time
What this means to our Indian readers looking to order a Xiaomi this week is that you should not be surprised if the initial stock runs out in a matter of minutes. If you missed the first batch, don’t worry, you can always try again when the next batch comes.
Just keep an eye on Xiaomi’s social channels, because that’s where they will tell you everything you need to know, including when the next batch arrives. Usually, it doesn’t take more than a couple of weeks.
Also, be on the lookout for Xiaomi’s even more affordable products, like the Redmi 1S and the Redmi Note.