Xiaomi partners with Uber to deliver new flagship phone

23 Jul 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Uber Partners With Xiaomi for Smartphone Sales in Singapore.

SINGAPORE — Chinese phone maker Xiaomi, popular for its value-for-money smartphones, is going upmarket with the launch of its most expensive phone, the Mi Note, which is more than two times costlier than the company’s next priciest offering. Picture the following situation: You’re living in Singapore or Malaysia, and you really want a Xiaomi phone, but walking into a store and buying one is just too plebeian for you?Uber Technologies Inc. will deliver Xiaomi Corp. smartphones in Singapore and Kuala Lumpur in the first partnership between the world’s most valuable technology startups. Xiaomi will distribute the new phone in style, as it is, for the first time, collaborating with car-sharing and taxi-booking company Uber to deliver the phones to some customers in Uber’s cars. The unusual promotion was announced by Xiaomi Vice President of International Hugo Barra on Facebook Thursday, who called it a “first-of-its-kind collaboration between two of the most innovative tech startups in the world.” The purchasing process is simple: Open the Uber app, select Xiaomi via the slider on the bottom and tap request.

After outselling Apple Inc. and Samsung Electronics Co. in China, Xiaomi is expanding overseas and selling devices such as air filters and headphones after a funding round in December valued the five-year-old company at $45 billion. Payment will be charged directly to the credit card tied to the Uber account and a Mi Note will be delivered to the user within a few minutes, the company claimed. In March last year, it launched the Mi3 for S$419, but it is no longer on sale. “At half the price of the iPhone 6 Plus, it is still value for money,” Mr Steve Vickers, general manager for South-east Asia at Xiaomi, said at the launch event today (July 24). “As the industry moves, and there are different niches within the market.

Ride-hailing service Uber has been valued at $50 billion, even as it deals with losses that outstrip revenue and battles regulators and politicians around the world. If you’re not familiar with Xiaomi’s Mi Note, it’s one of the best smartphones we’ve ever tried, with impressive specs, premium looks and a pretty affordable price of 569 Singapore dollars (about $416). Its specifications include a 5.7-inch full HD screen, a quad-core Snapdragon 801 processor, 3GB of RAM, a 13-megapixel rear camera (as well as 4-megapixel selfie cam) and 64GB of storage.

The promo comes amid turbulent times for the ride-sharing service, as more and more cities are protesting its services — making it even a topic of discussion in the 2016 Presidential Race. Priced at just RM1,549, the smartphone has a 13-megapixel camera with OIS (optical image stabilisation) to compensate for shaky shots and Philips two-tone flash.

E-commerce has this lag between purchase and delivery, so we were trying to see if we could come up with ways to reduce this lag.” Most customers order Xiaomi phones from its online store. There is also a 4-megapixel front-facing camera with Beautify mode, which intelligently guesses a person’s age and gender in order to apply 36 smart filters. The device’s 5.7in full HD display, which has a pixel density of 386ppi (pixels per inch), is curved slightly with tapered edges for a fancier look and comfortable grip. Similar to the Mi4i which was launched earlier, the Mi Note’s screen uses Sunlight Display tech which adjusts each pixel in real-time for contrast, so images are less affected by glare under the sun.

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