Xiaomi is one of the world’s biggest phone manufacturers. They’re largely known across the globe for their affordable devices, such as the Redmi series. They’re also known for breaking boundaries of what is seen as normal with the release of conceptual devices like the Xiaomi Mi Mix. The only problem is buying their devices can be difficult outside of India and China. Those looking to import Xiaomi devices can find themselves jumping through hoops to order from resellers with high import costs. This could be changing soon with the company announcing expansion into the US as early as the end of 2018.
“We’ve always been considering entering the US market,” Xiaomi Chairman Lei Jun reportedly said during China’s annual legislative session in Beijing, “We plan to start entering the market by end 2018, or by early 2019.”
While this marks Xiaomi’s first expansion into the US with smartphones, the company has been selling various other products for quite a while now. Their Android TV box, headphones, a 360-degree camera and a robot coding kit have all been available since last year. Still, that’s not what most people want to buy from them. It’s their high-end phones for a killer price that draws many in.
The largest hurdle will be if the company can get carrier support in the US. With the US government recommending against using Huawei devices and straight up forbidding them (along with ZTE devices) for use by US agencies, Xiaomi may be treated with the exact same level of contempt. We’ll see if Xiaomi can have a more successful start in the US than its competitors.