So it is all over the news: China’s Xiaomi is officially launching in Singapore this Friday on the 21st of February.
The first product it is launching in Singapore is Redmi, a high powered budget Android smartphone: it sports a quad-core processor and a high definition 720p screen which has a pixel density close to that of Apple’s iPhone 5s. The phone can also hold two SIM cards, a feature not common among smartphones in Singapore.
For those interested in buying the Redmi can visit xiaomi.com/sg this Friday and start placing your orders from 12pm (GMT+8). One thing to note: Xiaomi handsets have been extremely popular during launches, and usually sell out within minutes of availability.
For those who prefer not to participate in the five (or fewer) minutes of madness this Friday, all three Singapore telcos will also be offering the Redmi.
However, you would have to wait for about a week before you can start getting your hands on Redmi.
StarHub is the first to announce its plan to sell the phone on February 27. Originally priced at S$169, if you sign a 2 year contract with the telco, you can get the phone for free, a pricing plan that is hard to be matched by Samsung or Apple. Both M1 and SingTel have yet to announce their plans.
If you are looking for a higher specs smartphone than the budget smartphone Redmi, Xiaomi’s flagship phone, the Xiaomi Mi3, will be launched in Singapore on March 7. The 5-inch screen Xiaomi Mi3 will cost S$419 (US$332) in Singapore, which is about the same as its price-tag in mainland China.
Other than that, Xiaomi will also be opening a customer service center in a shopping mall called The Central. According to CNET, the company plans to expand to a larger location in the future. Singapore will be the base of operations for this region’s expansion, with a new corporate office and a distribution center slated to be opened soon.
One of the biggest concerns users might have for signing on Redmi is whether they would be able to download global apps to the phone, since Xiaomi is a Chinese brand.
Yes you can. In fact, in August last year, the Xiaomi MIUI app store shows that the company has already managed 1 billion downloads in just over a year of operation, and Xiaomi also claims a rate of downloads of 5 million per day. Popular global apps such as Facebook can be downloaded from the Xiaomi MIUI app store.
If you are considering a switch to a new smartphone, Redmi is definitely worth looking at.