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Monday, October 13, 2014

Diwali Dhamaka ... Flipkart billion .... and 'Mi 10400' powerbank

Diwali Dhamaka is perhaps not as hot as ‘billion day’ sale …. The online extravaganzas has put retailers on the back foot.  There is news that top  electronics brands asked executives at Amazon India to offer moderate discounts, not more than 15%, during its week-long Diwali sale starting October 10. This comes amidst reports that Flipkart's October 6 Billion Day Sale,  had slashed prices dramatically on some goods, leading to a backlash from traditional retail.  There is further news that world's largest online store Amazon and India's largest listed retailer Future Group have signed a deal to jointly sell goods over the Internet amid growing friction between online and offline retailers over heavy discounting.  Be it online or be it shops in local – mobile phones appear to be the ‘most selling product’ of all.  The Xiaomi Redmi 1S has been a smash hit since its launch for India, with demand far outstripping supplies so far. There are some comparisons showing Xiaomi product better bargain that the famed Nokia Lumia 520.

Chinese products are flooding Indian market. Xiaomi Inc is a privately owned Chinese electronics company headquartered in Beijing. It is one of China's biggest electronics companies that designs, develops, and sells smartphones, mobile apps, and consumer electronics.  The company's founder and CEO is Lei Jun, China's 23rd richest man according to Forbes. The name Xiaomi is the Chinese word for "millet”.  Its CEO Lei Jun suggested that  there are more meanings than just the "millet and rice”, linking the "Xiao" part to the Buddhist concept that "a single grain of rice of a Buddhist is as great as a mountain.”  -  "mi" is an acronym for Mobile Internet and also Mission Impossible, referring to the obstacles encountered in starting the company.

Chinese smartphone manufacturer Xiaomi today refuted Apple's allegation of stealing iPhone technology, saying one can only judge its products after using them. Responding to Apple's design head Jony Ive's accusation that Xiaomi has stolen iPhone technology, President Lin Bin said Ive should use a Xiaomi phone to know the difference between the two gadgets.

There are so many smartphones out there in the market – people use their smart phones for talking, listening to audio, seeing video, send SMS, MMS and more, take photos, check mails and literally, the handheld devices double for every other electronic gadget.  With the rapid development of Global economy, the continuous improvement of living standards, there are more and more portable electronic products in the world – all of them work on atteries; but the battery for built-in battery are low, because the battery capacity cannot meet the continual use of devices.   People are hooked to the devices all the time – be it traveling or on business.  So such increased and continued usage takes it toll on batteries – without power, one gets numb. 

The answer for instance charge and energy is not carrying spare battery – but gadget known as ‘Mobile Power Bank’. These devices can provide power and solve the energy requirement of many mobile devices.  Called power banks, they  appear attractive, compact, small size, light weight, easy to carry. They get charged and can charge various other devices…

Mi 10400 is a power bank. In other words, it is a battery -- similar to the one in  phone or tablet - encased in a metal body that has two ports. One of these ports -- a micro USB port similar to the one in your phone -- is used to charge the battery. The other port -- a full-size USB port -- allows you to connect a cable to it and then use it to charge your phone or tablet. It is not just any other  power bank. Unlike the other power banks which have a battery with capacity of 2000, 3000, or 5000 mAh, the Xiaomi power bank has a battery that can store 10,400 mAh. The large battery size means that the Mi 10400 is also slightly bigger and heavier than most of the power banks available in the market.

In an interesting report, India Today reveals that while a lot of people were unable to buy the Xiaomi Mi Powerbank in Flipkart's October 6 sale, that happened after around 1 lakh people had already purchased it that day. The Powerbank was put up on sale at a price of Rs.899, which is Rs.100 less than its normal price. By noon, the device was listed as "permanently discontinued". "That was probably an error. The product wasn't discontinued. It went out of stock," said Hugo Barra, Xiaomi's vice president for international markets. "Flipkart sold 1 lakh units of the Mi Powerbank during Big Billion Day sale on October 6." The Powerbank is now again available at Flipkart.

Mr Barra is quoted as saying that they could have offered it for even lower a price- but their Powerbank is rather heavy compared to its size and when they got orders for thousands of units in India – it involved more shipping charges going by its weight – which added to the overall cost.   Mi Powerbank have been so popular that in China, the company has come out with accessories that can be paired with the Powerbank. For example, there are USB lights and USB fans that can be used after they have been plugged into the Powerbank.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
13th Oct 2014.


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