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Xiaomi Sets Sights on Apple as Benchmark for Success

Xiaomi founder Lei Jun said Apple's iPhone remains the benchmark for premium smartphones, despite Xiaomi's goal to become the top vendor.

Xiaomi Corp’s founder, Lei Jun
Credits: Handout

Lei said Xiaomi can only catch up to Apple by competing directly against the iPhone. He referred to the iPhone multiple times in his annual speech where Xiaomi launched new products.

The 53-year-old Lei, worth $10.2 billion according to Forbes, spoke to 3,500 people. He shared personal stories and recommitted Xiaomi to pursuing Apple's high-end market share. Lei said the consumer electronics industry has fierce competition. Chasing the premium market forces innovation while ensuring future growth.

Beyond Apple, Lei wants Xiaomi to compete more aggressively at home. China's uneven recovery has weakened consumer spending. Xiaomi tied for fifth in China last quarter, per IDC. It ranked third globally behind Samsung and Apple. But headwinds exist in China and India.

Lei compared Xiaomi's new foldable, the Mix Fold 3, to Apple's iPhone 14 Pro Max. But he didn't mention becoming the top smartphone vendor, a previous goal. While Lei paints Xiaomi as an Apple rival, Xiaomi's market cap pales versus Apple's. Xiaomi reports Q2 earnings on August 29.

Lei said competing premium failed with the Xiaomi 10 and 11. The Mix Fold 3 starts at $1,240, sold out in minutes. It has Qualcomm's latest processor and Leica optics.

  • Lei Jun said Apple remains benchmark for premium phones

  • Goal to beat Apple drives Xiaomi's innovation

  • Fierce competition in consumer electronics

  • Uneven recovery in China weakens spending

  • Xiaomi struggling at home versus rivals

Source: SCMP

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