Xiaomi shipped just under 15 million units in
the three months ended June, while Samsung's 13.2 million unit
shipments just beat China's Lenovo Group by around 200,000 units
to take second place, said Canalys.
The three-year old Xiaomi, which closely apes many aspects of
Apple Inc and its designs, also nabbed fifth place by global
market share for smartphone makers in the second quarter,
research firm Strategy Analytics showed last week.
But Canalys's data also shows that Xiaomi is still almost
entirely dependent on its home market in China. Only about
100,000 smartphone units were shipped outside of China and the
jury is still out on whether it can replicate its domestic
The company is already setting up shop elsewhere in Asia in
Malaysia, Singapore and the Philippines. In India, where Xiaomi
launched the Mi 3 model last month, the company saw more than
100,000 people pre-register for a supply of 10,000 units.
Xiaomi is also looking to expand into other markets like Brazil,
Mexico, Indonesia and Thailand with the help of Hugo Barra, the
former vice president of the Android mobile operating system for
Google Inc who is now Xiaomi's international vice president.
"I'm quite optimistic," said Sameer Singh, a Hyderabad-based
analyst who writes about technology at tech-thoughts.net.
"They do have a problem right now, but it seems to be a supply
problem more than anything else," he said. "Right now,
international demand far outweighs supply. That could
potentially make interested customers defect to other
Xiaomi's critics have also lambasted the firm for infringing on
intellectual property rights. This includes using the logo from
Apple's Aperture application on a picture of one of its phones.
The Chinese company, hailing from a market notorious for lax
attitudes toward intellectual property, also saw its reputation
tarred when people found that it had passed off copyrighted
images as its own.
The original photographs were taken from places like National
Geographic and picture hosting site Flickr and passed off as
images taken with Xiaomi's smartphone camera.
(Reporting by Paul Carsten; Editing by Matt Driskill)
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