Xiaomi is the leader in the Indian smartphone market, according to IDC, but the company mostly competes in the entry-level and mid-range segment. The Chinese smartphone maker has little or no relevance in the premium segment where OnePlus, Samsung and Apple compete for Indian consumer’s moolah but Xiaomi seems to rethinking that strategy.
The company is set to launch the POCO F1, its first premium flagship in India today. The POCO F1 is said to feature premium hardware and offer specifications that will be competitive against flagship devices like the OnePlus 6. Following the launch of POCO F1, Xiaomi is expected to bring Mi 8 to the Indian market in September.
According to Digivamp, Xiaomi is accepting orders for the Mi 8 from brick and mortar stores across the country. The publication cites dealers in Delhi, Rajasthan, and UP as source for this information and the offline retail of Mi 8 is said to complement online sales. This information was initially reported by 91Mobiles. The information was further corroborated by speaking with employees at Xiaomi’s service center and it hints at September launch for Mi 8.
“We’ve been asked by the company to return older, unsold spares in order to make rooms for a new ‘iPhone screens’, back bodies, glass screen, camera component, magnets and ribbon cables,” an employee at Xiaomi service center in Chandigarh told Digivamp under the condition of anonymity. “It usually takes us about two weeks to receive parts and another week to conduct an inventory and send details to the company, all due process is usually completed before the product launch,” the employee added.
Xiaomi Mi 8: Specifications and Price
Xiaomi Mi 8 is the most premium smartphone yet from the Chinese smartphone and it features a notched display similar to that of Apple iPhone X. The notch on the Xiaomi Mi 8 enables facial recognition system similar to Apple’s Face ID.
The Mi 8 offers metal and glass design with 6.21-inch AMOLED display and a tiny chin at the bottom. The display has a resolution of 2248 x 1080 pixels and taller 18.7:9 aspect ratio. The smartphone is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 coupled with up to 8GB of RAM and 256GB internal storage. On the camera front, Xiaomi had equipped the Mi 8 with dual 12-megapixel rear cameras and a 20-megapixel selfie shooter with f/2.0 aperture and 1.8 micron pixel size. The selfie camera can be used to shoot AI portrait along with beautification feature.
Watch: Xiaomi Mi A2 First Look Video
The Mi 8 comes in two variants with the standard model supporting a rear-mounted fingerprint sensor while the explorer edition offers in-display fingerprint sensor. The Mi 8 was launched in China at a starting price of RMB 2,699 (around Rs 28,500) for the base model with 6GB RAM and 64GB storage. The variant with 6GB RAM and 128GB storage retails at RMB 2,999 (around Rs 31,600) while the 6GB RAM, 256GB storage model is priced at RMB 3,299 (around Rs 34,800).