Fast-growing smartphone maker Xiaomi, which has fuelled consumer interest by offering limited quantities via online retailers, plans to start selling its new 4G handsets in India at the retail shops of the country’s leading operator.
The Chinese company said it will offer its Redmi Note smartphones at more than 100 Bharti Airtel shops in six cities, as well as continue to market its handsets online in India via Flipkart.com.
A representative told Reuters that if sales at the outlets are strong, it will expand to additional cities and add more models.
Bharti has a 22 per cent share of the country’s almost 950 million mobile connections. But it has only about 250,000 4G customers, according to GSMA Intelligence figures.
In China about a third of Xiaomi’s sales come from “offline” channels, and it is targeting a similar percentage in India, Reuters said.
The four-year-old firm was the fourth largest smartphone maker in the world in Q3, after Samsung, Apple and Huawei, according to Gartner.
Xiaomi announced last week it sold 61 million smartphones last year – up 227 per cent from 2013. Its pretax revenue last year increased 135 per cent to CNY74.3 billion ($12.1 billion).