Xiaomi returns to PH armed with new strategy, smartphones

After pulling out unceremoniously from the Philippines in 2015, Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi has returned to the country with a vengeance as it introduced on Tuesday, March 13, two new Redmi smartphones, a new Mi Store, and a local distribution partner and retail partners.

Photo shows (from left): Ray Alimurung, chief business officer for brands and retail at Lazada; John Chen, director for Southeast Asia at Xiaomi; and Joyce Borlagdan, brand manager at Grimalkin Corporation

John Chen, director for Southeast Asia at Xiaomi, said during the formal re-launch at Makati City that the company had to leave the local market three years ago to recalibrate its strategy and focus on bigger markets such as India.

“The brand has inspired a growing following in the Philippines that has been clamoring for the company to bring its latest products to more retail touchpoints in the country. We are truly excited to be here today announcing our new partners and demonstrating our commitment to the market with new products and new stores,” said Chen.

Xiaomi announced that it has inked a partnership with Grimalkin Corporation, which will distribute, market, and support its products in the Philippines.

In addition, it also announced a partnership with online shopping giants Lazada and Shopee. Both of them will have official store pages offering the latest Xiaomi products.

Going forward, Xiaomi’s range of products will be available offline at authorized Mi Stores, as well as online through the official stores on Lazada and Shopee.

“Our online store will help Xiaomi products reach the farthest corners of the Philippine archipelago, while brick-and-mortar shops will help us connect with those who want to touch and feel the products before they buy,” said Chen.

“All official channels will offer products with official warranties so consumers will have peace-of-mind with every purchase of Xiaomi products.”

Following the successful launch of its first Mi Store in Trinoma, Quezon City, Xiaomi also announced the opening of another Mi Store in SM Megamall, Mandaluyong on Saturday, March 17.

The store will carry a range of Xiaomi products, including a series of Mi Ecosystem products such as smart home products, wearables, and other accessories.

The Redmi 5A

Leading Xiaomi’s newest product offerings for the Philippines is Redmi 5A, priced at P4590. Dubbed the entry-level smartphone king, the 5-inch Redmi 5A comes with an array of high-quality features never seen before in this price category, including a 13MP rear camera, a Qualcomm Snapdragon 425 processor and a 3000 mAh long-lasting battery.

Powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 425 quad-core processor, Redmi 5A supports simultaneous use of two 4G nano SIM cards and a microSD card up to 128GB.

The Redmi 5A boasts a 5-inch fully-laminated HD display and houses a 3000 mAh battery that can last up to 8 days standby time.

The camera on Redmi 5A is one of the highlights for an entry-level smartphone. It is is equipped with a 13MP rear camera with Phase Detection Autofocus (PDAF) for fast focusing and an f/2.2 aperture that guarantees excellent picture clarity. It has a 5MP front camera with an f/2.0 aperture that comes with Xiaomi’s Beautify mode for great selfies.

The smartphone comes with a metallic matte finish and is available in three colors: dark grey, gold and rose gold. It comes with 2GB RAM + 16GB storage and will be available on the official Lazada Mi Store with a retail price of P4590.

Registration for the device has started, and it goes on sale starting March 15, with a promotional launch price of P4390.

Besides Redmi 5A, Xiaomi also shared its plans to bring Redmi 5 Plus to the Philippines soon. This marks the first time that full-screen display innovations have been introduced in this smartphone category.

Xiaomi was the first technology company to bring the full screen display concept into the mainstream with its Mi MIX in 2016. Redmi 5 Plus now delivers this same concept to a new wave of mobile users, allowing them to benefit from the increased usable screen area while retaining a compact form factor.

Other than the 18:9 FHD+ display, Redmi 5 Plus bring features previously unseen in this category, including Qualcomm’s 14nm eight-core processors, large pixel (1.25μm) sensors for the main camera, front Selfie-light, as well as a long-lasting 4000mAh battery that lasts for up to two days.

The Redmi 5 Plus (4GB RAM + 64GB storage) has a retail price of P9,990, and will be available on March 17 at Mi Stores in the Philippines.

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