Chinese smartphone brand Xiaomi, which recently released the Mi 4i in India, has announced that it plans to make the smartphone available in Hong Kong and Singapore from 12 May.
Xiaomi Mi 4i specs
- 5in Full HD display (441ppi)
- Unibody polycarbonate design
- Five colours
- Snapdragon 615 chip w 2GB RAM
- 16GB storage
- 13MP/5MP cameras
- Fast-charge battery technology
The Mi 4i, which was the first smartphone to be launched by Xiaomi outside of its home country, features premium hardware but comes with a budget price tag. It has proved hugely popular with customers in India with 40,000 Mi 4i smartphones sold online in less than 15 seconds when it went on sale on 30 April.
Xiaomi will maintain the budget Mi 4i pricing in the new markets with the phone costing SG$279 (£138) in Singapore and HK$1599 (£135) in Hong Kong making it a very appealing prospect.
For that price you will get a 5in smartphone with a full HD resolution, a fast Qualcomm Snapdragon 615 chipset with 2GB of RAM, a 13 megapixel rear-facing camera and fast charge battery technology as well as the latest version of Xiaomi's MIUI software.
Speaking to the BBC about the launch, Xiaomi's head of global expansion Hugo Barra said that the company was planning on launching the Mi 4i in Latin America "at some point in the near future" and Barra's home country of Brazil is "also on the radar" for the new phone but it doesn't have a specific launch date yet.
Barra also revealed that the company was looking at Mexico and Columbia as markets it is interested in launching in next.
The company has said that 2015 will see it also launch smartphones in Russia, but it is highly unlikely the company will launch its smartphones in developed western markets like the US and UK any time soon.
The reason for this, according to Barra, is that launching in these markets would require "complex certification" and "multiple wireless band support". Instead the company is planning to launch its online stores in Europe and the US this year selling the company's accessories which Barra said speak to the quality of Xiaomi's engineering and "will start to get audiences in these markets familiarised with what we do".
Barra said it would "take it some time" to navigate the complex process of getting their smartphones on sale in these developed markets.