by Alexei Rivera | January 16, 2019 3:25 am
Listen, we really love Xiaomi phones (and even their smart lifestyle gadgets), but when the Chinese conglomerate comes over to claim a 30% Lazada sale to obviously compete with Huawei’s excellent straight up 30% clear-as-day discount to their popular P20 smartphone, we were expecting a whole lot. Xiaomi has a rich and varied list of phones to choose from and 30% off on say, a Pocophone F1 or a Mi 8 Pro would be massive, nay, earthshattering. But what kind of sales did we get? Mostly piddly squat.
Bit of background story – a handful of days ago, Huawei dropped a bombshell of a Lazada sale for their P20 smartphone – discounting nearly PHP 10k down to a PHP 21,990 price point. And the sale date? During the payday spike of January 14-16.
Xiaomi wasn’t going to take that sitting down (or so we assume is the reason for this sale), so they announced a sale for January 15-17 for up to 30% off on their smartphones. What was puzzling was that no phone models or prices even came with that sale announcement so there was barely anything to go with news-wise or even get excited about.
Huawei P20 for PHP 22k? Exciting. A nebulous sale for up to 30% off on phones we don’t know exactly which ones and for how much? A whole heck of a lot less exciting.
So when the day of the sale came, we decided to check Xiaomi’s list of phones on Lazada. There was an image link for the sale, but the phones we saw were at more or less their SRP or current street prices. The Pocophone F1 is at PHP 16,490 (down maybe PHP 1,500 at best); the Redmi Note 5 is still hanging above PHP 10k which is essentially SRP; Mi A1 which is about 2 years old now is finally lower than 10k but only barely at PHP 8,990. Same goes with most devices like Mi 8 Lite, Mi A2, et al. Maybe slightly lower than recent street prices, but not by much.
WHERE IS THE SALE?!
Sometime in the afternoon of the 15th we found the list on Xiaomi’s FB Page. The discounted phones were technically 4 units: Mi A2, Mi A2 Lite, Redmi 6 (3GB), and Redmi 6A.
To call this list a bit of “paasa” (false hope) is an understatement. Xiaomi has about 40 billion phone models, with some of them extremely desirable like the Pocophone F1, Mi 8 Lite, Mi 8, Mi 8 Pro, Mi Mix 3, etc. so we were hoping for at least some discounts on those. What we get instead are unexciting little price cuts that some of these phones already deserve at this point. The Mi A2 did not deserve to be priced at PHP 15k in the first place, among other things.
So essentially Xiaomi put out kind of a weak sale; killing possibly 2 birds with one stone: stealing some thunder from Huawei’s huge attention-grabbing P20 discount, and also bringing the SRP (Suggested Retail Price) of these devices to realistic numbers.
Admittedly Xiaomi’s profit margins are basically 0% at this point, and all of Xiaomi’s phones have always been extremely price-competitive despite sticking very close to their SRP. But given the 4 devices in this sale, we all know that a.) Xiaomi has way better models than these for the same prices and b.) these phones have seen similar discounts last year during 11.11 and 12.12 Christmas promos.
Speaking for their side, Huawei can seemingly manage to offer huge discounts on some of their devices because they have an end-to-end manufacturing process that even has them making their own processors. The Kirin 970 in the P20 is technically 2 years old now, and is already usurped by the current Kirin 980. A stock dump at this point makes sense, especially since Huawei will likely announce new devices this Q1 2019.
Still, we had high hopes for an earth shattering sale from Xiaomi. But sadly it fell flat. Why did they have to call attention to this when they knew it would inevitably be compared to Huawei’s and would be deemed inadequate? They even used the same “30%” discount number, have it happen on the same days, and even on the same website – essentially forcing us to make that comparison. Xiaomi has awesome phones at awesome prices, so they really didn’t need to call attention to this glaring difference.
But oh well, at least the Pocophone F1 is even cheaper now due to price adjustments – not due to this sale though.
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