Xiaomi has an interesting online-only model. But when India can force KFC to launch a vegetarian outlet, why can’t Xiaomi rethink its online-only distribution model.
Xiaomi Note 4G is now available at Airtel’s offline stores (133 stores in 6 cities of Bangalore, Hyderabad, Chennai, Mumbai, Delhi-NCR and Kolkata) as part of Airtel’s ‘Mi Day’ celebration. The devices will be sold on first-come-first-serve basis till stocks last. The Mi Day will be held every week subject to stocks being available (again : artificial scarcity, which is core to Xiaomi’s marketing model).
This is in addition to the ongoing booking process where customers can get a confirmed appointment at a store of their choice to purchase the Redmi Note 4G by visiting www.airtel.in/mi.
Airtel : Xiaomi Partnership Is More About Airtel 4G
Although the deal sounds sweet, there is a catch – Airtel prepaid uses can buy the device only with a minimum recharge of Airtel 1GB 3G data pack. Non-Airtel users will have to get an Airtel prepaid or postpaid connection to buy the device at Airtel outlets.
Customers purchasing the Xiaomi Redmi Note 4G will also be provided a 4G SIM and will be able experience 4G speeds on their device in cities where Airtel offers 4G services. Existing Airtel 3G users can enjoy 4G speeds on their new Redmi Note 4G at the same tariff as their existing 3G plan, without activating any special 4G plan. In cities where Airtel 4G services are not yet available, customers will be automatically upgraded to 4G at the same tariff as their existing 3G data packs once 4G services are launched in their city.
Not bad, huh? However, even if through an exclusive deal, it’s surprising to see Xiaomi do an offline sale of their device. Xiaomi was one firm which had relied completely on online flash sales on limited stock devices and this model has seen huge success for the Chinese smartphone giant whose phone sales and revenue are increasing in leaps and bounds. Also, Xiaomi’s flash sale trends have caught on pretty well and now every other firm tries flash sales through exclusive tie-ups with eCommerce players.
But there’s no harm when the customer wins, aye?