Redmi, the sub-brand of Xiaomi in India, is looking to expand beyond smartphones. After launching Redmi Earbuds S in India on May 26, the company detailed its ‘phone-plus’ strategy for the market. Redmi is an independent brand in China that sells smartphones, smart displays, TVs, laptops, audio accessories and more. In India, we might see the same strategy play out where Redmi will offer more than smartphones.
Xiaomi says Redmi true wireless earbuds is the first phase of its ‘phone-plus’ strategy for the Indian market. “We have finalised the phase one of the phone plus strategy for the Redmi brand and have decided to launch TWS earphones,” Xiaomi India Chief Marketing Officer Anuj Sharma told ET. “The idea is to disrupt the TWS segment the way we did with Redmi smartphones,” he added.
Xiaomi plans more products under Redmi brand in India
Anuj Sharma further added that the company is evaluating phase two of this strategy. It is reportedly evaluating categories that are connected to phones and is “looking at quite a few different segments”. “It is a large ecosystem of companies that Xiaomi works. The phone ecosystem can be helped to massifying the technology with the Redmi brand,” he told ET.
Xiaomi announced a big revamp for its product strategy in the country earlier this year. It confirmed that Mi brand will focus on the premium end of the market including smartphones and televisions. As part of the strategy, it has launched new televisions and recently added Mi 10 5G smartphone. It has also made Poco into an independent brand, giving more independence with product strategy. Earlier this month, Xiaomi launched the Mi True Wireless Earphones 2 for Rs 4,499 in India.
It followed up with an affordable TWS earbuds under Redmi brand priced at Rs 1,799. Counterpoint Research said India hearables shipments saw 700 percent YoY growth last year. Apple was the market leader followed by Noise, JBL, Samsung and Realme. The interesting note being that Realme became #5 player within a few weeks after launching the Realme Buds Air. Sharma told ET that the audio category is witnessing strong growth in the Indian market.
He thinks pricing of the TWS earbuds are still on the higher side and is addressing that price barrier with Redmi Earbuds S. He also confirmed that the company is evaluating the prospects of manufacturing TWS earbuds in the country. “We want to lead and make a big mark. That’s the first goal… there is a huge market to be tapped in India.”