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Xiaomi Begins Pre-Orders for Smartphone Prototypes

Beijing Evening News, 8/29/11

Beijing-based Android software developer and handset maker Xiaomi launched a three-day closed promotion today under which it will offer 200 commemorative-edition Xiaomi handset prototypes per day for pre-order, at a price of RMB 1,699. A Xiaomi employee said that the promotion was aimed at Xiaomi enthusiasts and would be open only to fans who had amassed 100 or more "experience points" on the company's discussion forums. Pre-orders will open to the general public on September 5, and the Xiaomi phone will officially go on sale on September 10.

A visit to the Hangzhou-based C2C & B2C e-commerce site Taobao revealed that a number of store owners were offering RMB 1 pre-orders for Xiaomi handsets. Prices listed were considerably higher than the manufacturer's suggested retail price of RMB 1,999, in some cases reaching RMB 2,600.

Editor's Note: The prototype handsets are of the same build quality as the commercial handsets, and will come with all state-mandated guarantees. In the event of any hardware issues prior to the official commercial release of the Xiaomi handsets, owners will be able to return the offending hardware for a free replacement. Owners who wish to receive a commercial handset as a replacement will be responsible for return shipping costs for the prototype handset.

Keywords: handset smartphone wireless Android Xiaomi mobile OS marketing pricing handset vendor

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