Xiaomi has pipped Samsung to become the top smartphone manufacturer in India for over four quarters in a row, and now it is looking to take on the likes of OTT platforms. The China-based smartphone maker, or the internet company (as Xiaomi says) is now looking forward to take on the likes of Paytm, Google Pay, Spotify, Amazon Prime and Netflix by monetizing internet services in India.
Counted as one of the top five most valuable technology start-ups, Xiaomi wants to generate revenues from apps, digital payments, and music and movie streaming. From the Rs 3,500 fund infusion, Xiaomi will invest a significant amount of money into expansion of services, Xiaomi India managing director Manu Kumar Jain told ET.
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Xiaomi globally made less than 1 percent profit margin from hardware or device sales in 2018, and we have stated that will never make more than 5 percent profit margin on hardware. It is the internet services which will make money for us, Jain said. Globally, Xiaomi has three financial pillars – devices, retail and services and Xiaomi is yet to monetize services in India. Designing and selling hardware is only half the job for us. The remaining half of the job is to engage with customers and sell internet services to grow fast, he added.
With the Mi Video and Mi Music, Xiaomi wants to monetize streaming content. As of now, both platforms have over 40 million users per month, and both services are currently free. Recently, Xiaomi also started a paid subscription plan for music service.
The company s file transfer tool, Mi Drop, has already hit 100 million downloads, and it recently launched Mi Pay, Unified Payments Interface (UPI) based payment application. Soon, Xiaomi is also looking to commercialize Mi Credit, a platform from where consumers can get an instant loan from partners such as KreditBee and ZestMoney.