Xiaomi already made its baby steps in the U.S. with a number of gadgets, including the Mi Box Android TV, already available for purchase locally.
However, the company is well-known for its heroics in the smartphone world, something that has even earned it some rare comparisons with the giant American company Apple. The Chinese OEM has been dubbed the Apple of China thanks to its slick, all-metal phones that look a lot like the iPhone. In fact, it has been mooted that this is the only reason the company hasn’t been able to avail its smartphones in markets other than those in Asia.
But this is set to change, starting with the 2016 Xiaomi Mi 5 and Xiaomi Mi Note 2. According to the latest reports, Xiaomi is already making some huge steps into the U.S. smartphone market by running tests of its devices on local networks. However, the same report further adds that the company could be ready to sell its first phone in the U.S. starting early 2017.
The company’s VP, Hugo Barra, has confirmed that the tests are being carried out using a special edition of the flagship Xiaomi Mi 5. The tech giant already has two versions of the Mi 5 in the market – the standard Mi 5 and a newer variant dubbed Mi 5s. Given that this phone is being used for testing purposes, it is likely that it could be among the first to make it to the U.S., but the company says that the recently-announced Xiaomi Mi Note 2 will also be part of the U.S. market once everything is ready.
Xiaomi wants to learn how carriers do their thing in the U.S. before making a move into the market, which is indeed a good move as it ensures decent compatibility with the many unique bands that are employed by some U.S. carriers.
Xiaomi has made its name out of selling slick and premium-looking phones that are packed with high-end features at very affordable prices. If this comes to the U.S., it could be a real threat for current players such as Samsung, Google, HTC, LG and even Apple, but Barra is quick to point out that this debut will only happen when the company feels ready enough.
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