Chinese tech major Xiaomi said it has seen 15-20 per cent increase in smartphone sales in the first phase of festive sale over similar timeframe last year, and remains confident of further growth in the coming weeks.
The company, which competes against the likes of Samsung, Vivo and Oppo in the hyper-competitive Indian smartphone market, has also unveiled a new 'Mi Smart Upgrade' programme that will offer Xiaomi phone users up to 70 per cent of the value on their old device when they upgrade to newer Redmi or Mi smartphones.
Speaking to PTI, Xiaomi India Chief Operating Officer Muralikrishnan B said the company saw strong uptake of products across various e-commerce platforms as well as its own website in the first phase of festive sale that started in mid-October.
"Our entire portfolio was refreshed 2-3 months ahead and we were lot more ready for festive season this year, which creates lot of customer excitement. It also gave us the ability to have bulked up the supply significantly...and supply sufficient quantities into the market," he explained.
He added that the company sold five million smartphones in the first wave of sale, which is a growth of about 15-20 per cent over similar time period last year across all platforms, and this is expected to accelerate further as Diwali celebrations kick in.
"We have seen a lot of first time smartphone buyers, there has also been a lot of propensity to upgrade to mid-premium and premium range...Total quantum of contribution of orders beyond metros and tier I on Mi.com also increased significantly," Muralikrishnan added.
Talking about its latest 'Mi Smart Upgrade' programme, Muralikrishnan said technology in the smartphone space has been changing at a rapid pace, whether it is related to camera, battery or display and that refresh cycles of phones have shrunk from 6-9 months from 10-12 months previously.
He explained that the value of the phone depreciates right after the purchase of the device, and Xiaomi India identified the challenge around the low resale value on smartphones and tailored its Mi Smart Upgrade offering around this.
"When customers go in for upgrades, they hardly get any value on the old devices. With 'Mi Smart Upgrade', customers will get an assured buyback from Mi India. We are confident that this plan will make upgrade options affordable, easy and convenient for our users," he added.
Xiaomi will offer the programme via its authorised retail outlets (like Mi Stores, Mi Homes and Mi Preferred Partners). Customers can purchase these buyback options from Rs 399 (for devices such as the Redmi 9 Prime) to Rs 1,999 (premium smartphones like Mi 10).
"Users get the freedom to encash their device any time after 3 months till 15 months of purchase, with exchange value ranging from 40 per cent to 70 per cent of the SRP (suggested retail price which is reflected on the bill) of the phone," Muralikrishnan said.
With this plan, users can get up to 70 per cent of assured value within 4-6 months, up to 60 per cent for 7-9 months, up to 50 per cent on 10-12 months and up to 40 per cent on 13-15 months, from the date of purchase and final billing.
This buyback value can then be utilised to purchase another Xiaomi device, he said adding that the buyback value will depend on the condition of the phone.