Xiaomi Launches First Flagship After Splitting Redmi
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Xiaomi 9 (MI 9) will be launched on 20 February 2019. PHOTO: Credit to Xiaomi

Xiaomi officially announced that Xiaomi 9 (MI 9) will be launched on 20 February 2019. It is the first Xiaomi flagship phone after splitting Redmi as a separate brand.

LEI Jun (雷军), president of Xiaomi, posted on Weibo and WeChat official account that do not expect MI 9 will be selling at a significantly discounted price and the Xiaomi flagship phone will focus on providing the most premium products in the future. Inside of Xiaomi, the nickname for MI 9 is "fighting angel" featuring good looking phone design and powerful in terms of performance.

Features about MI 9

  • Chipset: It comes with Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 855 octa-core chipset.
  • In-display fingerprint sensor: the fifth generation of the in-display fingerprint sensor will be used and it will increase the unlock speed by 25%.
  • Screen: A 6.4-inch Full HD+ AMOLED display which is supplied by Samsung. The screen is protected with Corning Gorilla Glass 6. The water drop notch display of the smartphone will offer 90.7% screen-to-body ratio.

The message from LEI is clear that Xiaomi flagship phones will further emphasis the medium-to-high end market where higher profit margin could possibly achieve. And re-build Xiaomi as a medium-to-high brand image as previously there is an unclear distinction between Xiaomi and Redmi.

However, to take the budget-friendly might not be that easy. Previously, Xiaomi launched several high end phones selling above RMB 3,000 (USD 443), but none of those seemed to win a remarkable market success.

In addition, Xiaomi and Redmi have been together for around 5 years. It might take some time for consumers fully distinguishing these two brands. Moreover, Xiaomi does not have a large existing medium-to-end customer base will raise a question who would be the targeted customer for xiaomi's new flagship phones and is that customer group big enough now or going to be big enough at the later stage.

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