With former rising star Huawei out of the way due to US sanctions, another Chinese manufacturer is emerging to take over the smartphone market — Xiaomi. The company could grow its shipments by a whopping 83% in the second quarter of 2021, making it the vendor with the second highest market share at 17%. It’s only narrowly surpassed by Samsung with a share of 19%.
It looks like Xiaomi’s low-budget strategy is paying off, as the company is mostly seeing astronomical growth rates in emerging markets like Latin America (300% growth) and Africa (150%). Western Europe still contributes with a growth of 50%. However, Xiaomi is already eying the more lucrative flagship market with products such as the Mi 11 Ultra, which we reviewed quite favorably, so it’s clear the company has its eyes set on Samsung and Apple’s bread and butter.
Things haven’t always looked so bright for Xiaomi. As Xiaomi CEO Lei Jun writes in an open letter to employees, the company already reached third place globally in 2014, but was then faced by difficulties that it could only solve after a “comprehensive review” of its business in 2016. Fast forward five years, and Xiaomi is able to reap the fruits of its labor, though we’re sure Huawei’s demise was another helpful factor.
The company isn’t looking to slow down anytime soon, either. It has just raised $1.2 billion in debt to further push its products into more markets, all while exploring new opportunities like electric vehicles.
Personally, I see a lot of things to like looking at Xiaomi phones, though I still don’t love the unnecessary changes the company adds to its flavor of Android and the occasional bugs. Me and other tech enthusiasts might be the minority though, since Xiaomi’s success speaks for itself.