Xiaomi, the so-called “Apple of China” and the biggest smartphone maker in the country, announced on Friday that it will soon sell its popular line of consumer electronics in the US, UK, France, and Germany.
On its Facebook page, Xiaomi said it will start off lightly in these countries by selling only four accessories from an online store, including two power banks, a pair of headphones, and a fitness wearable. Customers can place orders beginning May 19th at 7 a.m. EST.
Still, it’s doubtful Xiaomi has any plans to sell its insanely popular line of smartphones in the US anytime soon. Back in March, Xiaomi VP Hugo Barra suggested the US wouldn’t see Xiaomi phones because its phones aren’t yet compatible with North American 4G LTE networks. He also mentioned how the way handsets are sold in China is very different to how phones are sold in the US, referring to how Americans buy subsidized smartphones in exchange for carriers’ contractual agreements.
Xiaomi notes it will have a limited quantity of these accessories, and that anyone wanting to purchase them will need to create a Mi account. The account sign-up and login page shown in the Facebook post is in Chinese, so we hope your browser of choice has a translation feature, even if it isn’t very accurate (our Chrome browser translated the main sentence on the page as “An account, play all millet service!”).
You can find the US sign up page here.
Even though Xiaomi devices have never been available outside of China and India, news of its success and near cult-like following in China makes headlines because they’re more popular than Apple devices. And now, the company is probing Apple’s home turf.
The accessories being sold in the US are relatively inexpensive, and it will be interesting to see how they compare in quality and performance to similarly priced and more expensive counterparts currently being sold in the US.