WangfujingSource: Apple

What you need to know

  • Xiaomi is setting its sights on Apple in China.
  • Founder Lei Jun says the company is aiming to benchmark against Apple in both products and experience.
  • It also wants to become China's biggest high-end brand in the next three years.

Xiaomi chief executive and founder Lei Jun has said the company wants to benchmark against Apple in terms of both product and experience and become China's dominant high-end brand within three years.

In comments posted to Weibo noted by SCMP Lei said:

[We aim to] fully benchmark against Apple in [terms of] product and experience and become China's biggest high-end brand in the next three years

Lei went on to say that the high end smartphone arena, which features Apple's best iPhones like the iPhone 12 and iPhone 13, is "a war of life and death". The company recently committed some $15 billion to research and development over the next five years. Lei also reiterated the company's longer-term goal to become the world's number one smartphone vendor, an effort that also involves opening an astonishing 20,000 new stores in China on top of the 10,000 it already operates.

A Counterpoint report from December noted that Apple had become the dominant brand of smartphone in China in October 2021 thanks to its iPhone 13, from that report:

New data from Counterpoint Research has indicated that Apple surpassed vivo to become the largest smartphone brand in China in October of 2021. The iPhone 13 apparently increased sales 46 percent month over month while the overall market grew only 2 percent.

Tarun Pathak, a Research Director, said that the top brand has been changing on the regular since the decline of Huawei.

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