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Has Xiaomi Pulled Out Of The PH?


We’ve heard plenty of rumors that Xiaomi has essentially given up in the PH, but we’ve heard nothing from the brand themselves. After several readers informed us that Xiaomi’s official service centers have pulled out, we decided to look into the matter ourselves, and things aren’t looking too good for Xiaomi.

First, the website. The last update that we got from the company was back in July of last year, where the company officially unveiled the Mi 4i locally. Since then we haven’t seen or heard anything from Xiaomi from their official channels, despite the company releasing new devices left and right in other markets.

Mi PH Facebook page

Another worrying sign is the lack of updates from their Facebook page. For a company that relies heavily on both social media and word of mouth to promote products, that’s not a good sign. The last update from Xiaomi’s official Mi Philippines Facebook page was back in November – even during the busy holiday season the Facebook page remained eerily silent, which was our first clue that all wasn’t well with the brand here in the PH. Calling the phone number listed on the Facebook page does nothing.

Mi Ph 2

Remember that exclusive service center that’s supposed to serve as a place to see the products before you order it online? That’s marked in Google as permanently closed. We also contacted Aikontech, the company tapped to offer service and support to Xiaomi products through the numbers listed on the official website of Mi Philippines and they’ve told us that they’re no longer servicing Xiaomi phones. Even Lazada, the retail company that Xiaomi tapped to sell their phones online is no longer showing restraint in listing grey market Xiaomi devices in their search results. When Xiaomi first arrived in the PH, it was difficult, if not impossible, to find Xiaomi devices not released in the PH in their website (probably as a matter of courtesy for the brand).

So what went wrong for Xiaomi? It’s probably too early to tell, but from what we could see, it was their slow reaction to the realities of selling phones in the PH. As a company that made their fortune selling phones purely through online sales channels, Xiaomi relied too heavily on the hype of e-commerce in the PH. Fact is that the buying public is still wary of buying phones online, for a number of reasons (some illogical). The PH buying public still prefer physical retail channels, a fact that Xiaomi was slow to adapt to. It’s a reality that many other brands, including established Chinese rival Huawei, has come to terms with. Huawei has essentially dissolved its Honor brand of phones for the PH, which utilized the same online-only selling strategy that Xiaomi used, and re-badged phones that it thinks will sell in the PH under their main brand.

Despite all of the evidence, there’s still a slim chance that the company may just be gearing up for a re-launch. The PH is still one of the biggest growing markets in the world, something that even Xiaomi, a company that’s making a killing in another developing country, India, can’t ignore.

Xiaomi has yet to respond to our question about their current status in the PH. We’ll update this story as soon as they send word.

John Nieves

John is a veteran technology and gadget journalist with more than 10 years of experience both in print and online. When not writing about technology, he frequently gets lost in the boonies playing soldier.

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  1. Xiaomi’s absence in the country helps keep our local brands dominates and still retains their market share… But if they will come back, it will surely give good competition to them.

  2. Actually, I sent an e-mail to their customer support. I was asking if there will be updates on the Mi Pad. One of their employees responded,
    “I apologize for the inconvenience. For now, almost all the service center in PHL are closed. After this period, the sellers(companies) will help you on the repair things.
    Please wait for some time. We are so sorry about this.”
    But I am not really sure if they will still market their products here.

  3. Carlo and the unbox team, why not ask Hugo Barra directly via a tweet or something? You were able to rub elbows with him when he visited the PH, surely, he can give us an official statement. If only they knew that there are now more Xiaomi product users in the country willing to pay extra in the grey market just to own their products compared to last year when they are still “existing”.

    With the recent release of their new phones and as long as they don’t price them like Oppo, Vivo, Gionee and Huawei, they can easily be one of the best selling mobile phone brands in the country today based on the number of Xiaomi groups in Fb, forum sites and also the number of grey market sellers.

  4. What about Novotech (distributor of Meizu)? Their Facebook is down, so is their stores in SM Manila and Lucky Chinatown, are they gone too?

    1. about to disappear as well, sadly. wala na silang bagong phones, and wala narin updates and website and fb page nila. sayang ganda pa naman ng meizu.

        1. Sayang nga. I bought the M1 note at SM BF before. Now its closed. Grey market na lang talaga if you want to have these kind of phones.

  5. well one of the main problems they have here is that they are late in releasing products sa atin. ano lang ba ang naging available sa atin? they hyped us with Mi3 and that’s it, the rest tira2 lang. ano lang available sa atin? Redmi? Redmi 2? lol~ how would you expect people to support them kung naglalaway lang tayo parati sa mga non existent models? :P

    1. Tira-tira ng Xiaomi India, satin binabagsak kaya late na release. Buti pa SG, for a small country and market, updated and existing pa rin Xiaomi.

      1. You clearly nailed it N. If only nagrerelease sila dito ng mga bagong units nila then xiaomi will dominate the competition for sure. I love Xiaomi mura na matibay pa, and miui is simply irresistible. Yeah, kung naglabas lang sila ng mga bagong units then mas nakilala sana sila dito sa Pinas. Kaso wala eh, hanggang tira tira lang tayo.

  6. Among other players like cherry, starmobile and the likes, xiaomi lng ang pwedeng tumapat sa big players like samsung and lg kasi good quality talaga mga items nila. Lalo na internationally known na sila.

    1. xiaomi lang? :P you must be kidding. how can you say that kung hindi man lang tayo nakatikim ng Mi4? Mi Note/Pro? Mi5? Redmi note /2/3?
      sila lang pwedeng tumapat eh wala nga silang binenta dito pwera sa mi3 at redmi na hindi nabibili. the brand is basically non existent here.
      you are only looking at the low end/budget part kasi, but mid range to flagship, you must have forgotten about Asus and Huawei.

  7. di ata gumana yung technique nilang flash sales. 4000 units lang hirap pa sila.

    saka alam naman natin na hirap pa rin tayong mag tiwala sa online shops sympre di natin nakikita ng actual, nanay ko lang e wla tiwala kahit anong paliwanag mo kesyo bka defective pagdating at wla kang kpalit kpag may nasirang parts.

    tingin ko dahil yan hinaharang ng customs at mahal ang shipping e., at lalo na nalaman nilang puro phones yun edi lalagyan un ng malaking tax.

    sayang service centers nila cute pa naman ng mga plushies na yan

    1. flash sale is effective as you can see sa mi3 successful naman. but as I said, yung ibang binibenta nila is outdated/tira2 model which is not what the people want.
      it’s their fault to begin with kung bakit nawawalan sila ng support dito :P

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