Lei Jun, chair of Xiaomi, takes a selfie on the Xiaomi Note smartphone. (Ng Han Guan, AP)
Cape Town – Fin24 users are eager to see Xiaomi disrupt the South Africans market with lower priced smartphones.
Fin24 reported that the manufacturer was entering SA through a distribution deal with MIA Group.
“Our target audience is 20 – 30 year old males who are tech savvy and comfortable buying things online. We are going to be offering purchasing online but in South Africa you still have to distribute through the normal mass channel,” Kerry Taoushiani marketing executive at MIA told Fin24.
Fin24 user Ryan could hardly contain his glee at the imminent local release of the brand.
“I think that the Xiaomi release in South Africa is long overdue. As a person that admires technology I have been following Xiaomi since their Mi3 device made a lot of noise in the smartphone community.
“I emailed Vodacom last year and asked if they would ever bring Xiaomi onto South African soil. They told me that they are in talks with the manufacturer.
“With regards to pricing: The Mi 4 sells for anywhere between R6 000 - R9 000 on bidorbuy. If the MIA group can bring it to SA without adding too much taxes it would be great.
“Xiaomi is going to be a game changer. Local and international brands that mass produce different smartphone with just a different name but similar or identical specifications are gonna have a hard time standing their ground.
“It is high time we that we are liberated from buying expensive smart phones that do not offer value for money.
“I'm a student and I love tech. If the price is right and it's sold at an appropriate retailer I would love to get myself one (if I can gather the funds that is). I've been following News24's Technology news section since 2012. You guys do a great job at keeping one updated with the trends.”
Xiaomi has seen success in China and commands global market share of 5.6%. Fin24 user Piet who has a Samsung is convinced that the brand will do well in SA.
“Yes indeed Xiaomi will dominate Africa in the next four to six years. In China a lot of people use it for all day work. It is durable and well positioned against Apple and Samsung. Time to get the best price for best quality. The bet is on.”
Fin24 user Sibusiso expects that Xiaomi accessories also make it to SA.
“Xiaomi is going to bring a mean competition to brands like Samsung, Microsoft, Apple, Sony, BlackBerry and the rising Huawei brand. I wish Xiaomi could also bring their best TVs and cellphone accessories.”
Xiaomi sold over 61 million handsets in 2014 and will have a mountain to climb to beat Samsung’s 56.6% South African market share.
Fin24 user Cornelius summed the mood of Fin24 users with his comment: “Yeaaahhh!!! Bring it on.”