Xiaomi is one of the foremost brands in the world when it comes to affordable smartphones, packing impressive specs at a reasonable price. The company has already showed its commitment to cheaper 5G phones with its £599 Mi Mix 3 5G and the ~$520 Mi 9 Pro 5G, but it’s going even cheaper in early 2020.
Company CEO Lei Jun said that all of Xiaomi’s phones released in the first half of 2020 for 2,000 yuan (~$285) or more will offer 5G connectivity, according to MyDrivers (h/t: Gizmochina). What exactly does that mean, then?
The firm’s early 2020 flagship devices, like the Mi 9 successor (presumably called Xiaomi Mi 10) are therefore likely to have 5G for starters, as they fit the price window. We also know that the upcoming Redmi K30 will indeed pack next-generation cellular connectivity, although we’re not sure about a launch date or price.
We don’t know if Xiaomi will launch another Mi Mix device in the first half of the year though, but there is a precedent in the Mi Mix 3 5G and Mi Mix 2S. And if Xiaomi indeed follows this trend in H1 2020, then it stands to reason that the next Mi Mix device will have 5G too.
The Redmi Note series is a different story though, as the Redmi Note 7 Pro and Redmi Note 8 Pro didn’t actually breach the ~$285 barrier at launch in China. So unless Xiaomi decides to increase pricing or offer specific 5G variants, I wouldn’t hold my breath for Redmi Note 5G variants in the first half of the year. The company’s low-end Redmi phones like the Redmi 8A also retail for well under $150, so don’t expect a 5G option in this category.
Xiaomi’s CEO reiterated the firm’s plan to launch at least ten 5G phones in 2020 as well. Hopefully this means 5G phones for under ~$285 in the second half of the year.
We’ve contacted Xiaomi for more clarification, including the possibility of this strategy applying to Western markets. We’ll update the article when/if they get back to us.