Xiaomi has been building a solid reputation of offering impressive value for money in the smartphone space. From the £459 Mi 8 to the £329 bargain Pocophone F1, the company offers an appealing alternative to paying over £800 for the latest and greatest from Apple, Samsung or Huawei. But those days be soon be coming to an end, according to the CEO, Lei Jun.
“We want to get rid of this reputation that our phones cost less than 2,000 yuan (~£227),” Jun said in a video translated by TechNode.
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“We want to invest more and make better products. I said internally that this might be the last time our price will be under RMB 3,000… In the future our phones might get more expensive — not a lot, but a little more expensive.”
The good news is that the company has managed to push out one more flagship handset before it begins to up the prices. The Xiaomi Mi 9 comes with the brand new 7nm Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 processor, up to 12GB RAM and 20w wireless charging, and still starts at just €449 (~£386) in Europe.
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If action follows Jun’s words, then this could well be the last bargain flagship from the company, but there are two important caveats: firstly, every company is raising smartphone prices year on year. Even OnePlus, the masters of getting top-end specs on a budget, have gone from a phone costing £329 to £499 in under three years. The second is that Jun was quite clear that the increase would be “not a lot”. If that’s the case, you shouldn’t rule out Xiaomi for your 2020 smartphone just yet.
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