Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi is coming to Malaysia – you know that already. But the question on every Mi fans’ lips is simple: when? Well, that question can now be answered.
Xiaomi will be marking its entry to Malaysia with a launch event in less than two weeks – May 19, to be exact – with the launch of its current flagship, the Mi 3. The price? RM889.
The Mi 3 is the company’s flagship smartphone, powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 (MSM8974AB) 2.3GHz quad-core chipset with 2GB of RAM, 5-inch Full HD IPS display, 13MP rear Sony camera, 2MP front-facing camera, and a generous 3050mAh battery. The model that will be available in Malaysia will only be the silver colour, 16GB variant. The Mi 3 will also ship with two SIM trays: one for micro-SIM and another for the larger mini-SIM. At RM889, it virtually makes all other smartphones in its price range completely unable to compete.
In our meeting with Xiaomi Global VP, Hugo Barra, he mentioned that the Mi 3 is the first of many other products to come. Along with the Mi 3, Xiaomi will be including a few accessories on sale, including a flip case, soft gel case, screen protectors, and the company also hinted that its hugely popular Mi Power Bank and Mi In-Ear Headphones will be available in this initial batch as well.
[Update] the Mi Power Bank will be available on May 20 as well.
If you’re one of the many who plan to purchase the Mi 3, do note that the device and other accessories will be only available at www.mi.com/my, where the only payment method accepted is PayPal.
As for future products, Barra notes that Xiaomi will definitely be bringing in as many products as they can from its product portfolio, including more colours for Mi 3, and beyond mobile products such as the recently-announced Mi Router which may take longer to arrive due to certification processes. The Mi Box, on the other hand, may prove longer to arrive (if at all) as it involves getting content licenses from production companies.
And no, we did not forget about the other smartphones. The 8GB Redmi will be available for Malaysian customers about two weeks after the Mi 3, and will be priced “at about half” of what the Mi 3 costs. Unfortunately, Barra did not give a specific time frame for the Redmi Note.
Xiaomi will be launching the Mi 3 on May 19, where not only Barra will return to KL, Xiaomi co-founder and President, Bin Lin, will also be making an appearance. Given that Malaysia is only the second international market that Xiaomi will be penetrating, the arrival of the President in its China HQ does show how serious Xiaomi is in making an impact outside of its home country.
And judging by the exceptionally positive reception Xiaomi has received judging by its official Facebook page for its Malaysian fans, it’s well on its way to doing just that.
P/S: We asked you to let us know what questions would you like to ask Hugo Barra in our meeting with him. Well, some of your questions have already been answered in the article, but we also selected three other questions (he had a plane to catch) and here are his answers:
1. What will Xiaomi be announcing on May 15th?
I don’t know, they haven’t told me. *smirks*
2. Will you be making devices with QWERTY keyboards?
No. I think that era is behind us.
3. Any plans on joining the “high-end specs with low price”‘ game like OnePlus and Google’s Nexus?
*puzzled look* That’s us. That game is defined by us. OnePlus? Our device is priced lower than OnePlus.