Sohu IT, 2/25/14
Shang Jin, GM of Beijing-based Android device maker Xiaomi's gaming business unit, has confirmed that Xiaomi has reorganized its MiTalk mobile instant messaging (IM) and Xiaomi Game Center teams under a newly established "Xiaomi Interactive Entertainment" business division. The new division has been charged with oversight of all of Xiaomi's gaming, news, online video, and other entertainment content, making the content available to Xiaomi users both through pre-installed MIUI apps and through the MiTalk platform.
In response to speculation that Xiaomi will enter the game development business, Shang indicated that, while Xiaomi has no plans to develop games in the foreseeable future, it will continue to support products from its partially owned online and mobile gaming subsidiary Westhouse Group, a subsidiary of software developer and online entertainment provider Kingsoft (3888.HK).
With regard to video and film content, Shang noted that Xiaomi has partnered with internet and software company Xunlei to provide streaming of Xunlei's "Xunlei Kankan" P2P video service content to users of Xiaomi's "Xiaomi Box" internet TV STB and Xiaomi TV smart TV products. Shang also disclosed that Xiaomi, while not interested in purchasing any film or TV copyrights, is currently considering investment in one or two TV and film production companies, with the intention of producing original content.
When asked about the possibility of Xiaomi's "Duokan Reader" e-reader software business also being integrated into Xiaomi Interactive Entertainment, both Shang Jin and Hu Xiaodong, VP of Xiaomi's Duokan Technology, denied that any such plans are in the works. Duokan Reader, with 25 mln total users and 350,000 paying members at the end of 2013, recorded average daily revenue of more than RMB 60,000 during the year.
Editor's Note: For more background on this topic, please see "Rumor: Xiaomi Sells MiTalk Business to Wali Network" MD 2/23/14 issue, "Xiaomi Takes Stake in Kingsoft Gaming Subsidiary" MD 2/14/14 issue and "Rumor: Xiaomi to Invest in Xunlei" MD 1/16/14 issue.