With this forceful headline, we are going to talk about the great dizziness of strategy that Xiaomi carries with its brands and how confusing it is at the user or future customer level.
Xiaomi throughout its first years of life sculpted two submarines that are highly known, we talk about Redmi and Mijia. Two brands that have managed to take Xiaomi to the top of the top.
Redmi and Mijia, the two big Xiaomi brands that have made it get to where it is today
Redmi It is a sub-brand created in its essence to bottle all low and mid-range smartphones. A brand in the purest style of what is Honor of Huawei, or like what is currently Realme with the Chinese group BBK. A sub-brand that in 2019 is led by the visible face of Lu Weibing who enters to make Redmi an independent brand of Xiaomi. This move allows Redmi to face its own risks with the launch of new smartphone models targeting the high-end and gadget sector. Redmi is proclaimed as independent but it is still rocked by Xiaomi since without the parent company, Redmi would be nothing. This we have already discussed many times and it is a mere marketing stamp, just as Honor or Realme have done.
Mijia It is the home brand and gadgets that Xiaomi launches for its market. This brand has not changed over the years and is established as a reference in the home and home automation market. Xiaomi has strongly bet on its brand and in recent years Mijia has exponentially increased the product assortment. This brand is marketed worldwide in the markets where Xiaomi sells its products.
Poco’s arrival changes the brand strategy in the Xiaomi corporation
Xiaomi about 4 years ago entered its largest current market outside of China. Xiaomi entered India as a great breath of fresh air as it is a country in full demographic expansion and with a strong need for the creation of cloud companies as well as consumer technology.
Throughout these years Xiaomi in India has not had much competition, since there was Samsung and a few more phone brands that offered little in the country. Xiaomi in India managed to captivate the consumer market that increasingly appreciated the brand strategy maneuver carried out by Xiaomi in the country. Xiaomi bet heavily on the creation of smartphone manufacturing companies and with commercial agreements between manufacturers in the country, where its maximum representative named Manu Kumar Jain was praised for getting the company to start creating employment through the arrival of the Chinese company in the country. .
This job creation movement that was being achieved in India through foreign companies was called “Make in India”. A movement that sought to get foreign companies to bet on the Indian market in the manufacture and sale of products. Xiaomi was one of the drivers of this movement and since then we have seen the Chinese company seek that the manufacture of products such as smartphones, TVs or laptops has been a movement in which Xiaomi gains sales and India manages to improve the quality of the professions. in an underdeveloped country with a great lack of qualified professions.
This has made Xiaomi in India one of the fastest-growing brands, with a good image and strong sales.
In 2018, the representatives of Xiaomi in India believe that a good option to improve their image and continue betting on the motto of “Make in India” is to create an independent brand that goes hand in hand with Xiaomi and thus improves all the data obtained.
Before continuing I would like to clarify that the word Independent according to the RAE (Royal Spanish Academy) means:
As an adjective, ‘(person or thing) that does not depend on another’, ‘(thing) that has no connection with another’ and ‘(person) that maintains its way of thinking or acting without admitting external intervention’.
As we will see below, both Redmi and Poco are not independent due to many factors where all these companies are needed to project their commercial future.
After thousands of rumors born with the birth of the Pocophone brand, the Poco F1 is born, a smartphone based on the Xiaomi Mi 8 that cuts down on its hardware features to be the winning sales option during that 2018.
Poco F1, the birth of a Xiaomi branding strategy experiment, creates what was not expected and becomes one of the best-selling smartphones in India. Later, after a few months and after a long wait, the Poco F1 lands in Europe and Latin America. The Poco F1 created for India is a symbol of having been a business success. An “independent” brand supported by Xiaomi that creates its first smartphone based on another existing terminal that lowers the price to be the winning choice of the words “quality price”.
Despite the fact that the Poco F1 was one of the best-selling smartphones wearing a MIUI layer modified by the Pocophone team in India, Xiaomi decides that Pocophone in 2019 should not launch any smartphone. Throughout 2019, users were expecting to see the arrival of a Poco F2, a smartphone that would be based on another Mi or Redmi brand terminal and that would come to offer a new winning option in 2019. But this never happened. After some somewhat rough events, more than half of the staff dedicated to this brand in India are fired or relocated to other positions. Little is sunk and displaced into oblivion.
At the beginning of 2020, Manu Kumar Jain, Xiaomi chief executive in India announces the return of Poco as an independent brand, a brand dedicated to the Indian market where he was born and where he has been seen to grow, achieving his maximum sales milestone.
So the spirits of seeing a Poco F2 after 2 years return, but before the launch of this longed for Poco F2, the company decides to launch the Poco X2, a smartphone identical to the existing Redmi K30 that was only sold in China, in its market. a model that was never launched in our market. The differences that we found between both models was that the Poco X2 did not contain payments with NFC since in India there is no such payment system due to the technological delay that the country has. In addition, the software was changed to add the Poco launcher (a launcher created by Poco that differs from MIUI by having a desk with a drawer for apps), and changing the sticker on the back that said Poco instead of Redmi.
Little seems tied to manufacturing what already exists and not to creating new smartphones such as the Poco F1 that gave it so much fame and glory during its jump. Little has been achieved during this 2020 as a kind of “rebranding” machine that only manufactures what already exists created by the Redmi sub-brand, a brand that has already existed in the Indian market since Xiaomi arrived in the country and which was the brand that most smartphones sold year after year.
The expected Poco F2 Pro arrived a few months ago and of course following the path created with the Poco X2, being a Redmi K30 changing the software and the sticker on the back. The expected terminal did not offer this time such a contained price and this time Little came to Europe again with this smartphone at a starting price of € 500, being much higher than expected by users.
This Poco F2 Pro was the real consolation prize created for users in Europe because these users were crying out for the arrival of a Poco F2. Unlike the first version of the Poco F1, this Poco F2 Pro It is not sold in India and it is not manufactured in that country either, otherwise it would have been selling.
Today, Poco has presented a new terminal in India called Poco M2 Prop that is identical to the Redmi Note 9 Pro that we have in our country and that is manufactured in China. Poco launches this M2 Pro to claim the motto of «Make in India», a motto that does not make sense to accompany it to the Poco brand, since the other terminals that are sold in India of the Mi or Redmi brand are also manufactured in the country .
Xiaomi’s brand strategy is definitely a mess
And here comes the question kit, What is Little actually? What does Poco offer that Redmi does not offer? Little is going to launch more smartphones in Europe or Latin America?
Poco was created with a purpose and has changed this so many times that it is no longer well known what this brand really is for if in India and the other markets the Redmi brand does the same as Poco. Seeing that the Poco F2 Pro is not sold in India we can say that if they get more terminals of this brand in our country it is for the mere fact of retaining the fame gained with the Poco F1 and that it is sold for that image given that this Poco F2 Pro builds on an existing Redmi brand terminal, making Xiaomi’s Poco brand strategy null.
Xiaomi has created a monster in which it has not known how to take care of the details of the brands along with the strategy. We see Redmi as an “independent” brand that launches its own smartphones and clones what has been launched in products and gadgets from its parent brand Xiaomi (Mi). On the other hand we see Poco without a reason for existence, a reason that they have been in charge of breaking into a thousand pieces to offer the same that exists under the Redmi brand making a name of products and without an identity. Basically Poco’s existence is absurd and he must definitely die or be totally independent in his main market launching his own products in India and with his own R&D.
Poco, Redmi and Xiaomi, three brands that do practically the same thing and rename the products themselves
This model of creating strategic brands without an identity is a disaster that stains the Xiaomi brand and corporation, and which in turn neglects to help users understand the reason for launching smartphones with these brands if in the end everything is the same born.
As always happens, the user is the main disadvantaged in this type of products that confuse them by not knowing which models to buy, what models have come out new and what are the differences between them.
In 2019 we saw the Redmi K brand born in China. A Xiaomi brand with a strategy that has become highly known outside the borders of the Asian country with its first Redmi K20 model and the second Redmi K20 Pro model. These two models a few months after being launched in China were launched in Spain under named after Mi 9T and Mi 9T Pro.
Both were renamed under the Xiaomi parent brand and followed in the wake of the Mi 9 flagship. Two models created by the defending idea that Redmi was independent and renamed them in Europe under the name of the Mi company. A real nonsense that did not help us see Redmi as an independent brand. In addition, both Redmi K20 did not have a design similar to the Xiaomi Mi 9, which did not follow this line and were a real glob of name. To all this we must add the ingredient that Redmi is a highly recognized brand due to the launch of smartphones with very tight prices, it was not necessary to change the name of these two Redmi models to sell them highly, since they would have sold the same or even more.
Why do we want sub-brands if after all the products born are called with other names and associated with other brands or sub-brands?
This model of creating brands under Xiaomi without strategy or identity attacking the three brands to the same market has neither head nor foot, and the only thing that Xiaomi is going to achieve for these paths is that users get tired and write texts like this one that I do. I have drafted.
We hope that in 2021 Xiaomi will really think about the business model that it wants to do and if any brand is to stay in China or India, it will be the best not to continue confusing users or continue to tease users with the words of “Independent brand”.