Xiaomi launches Mi Band 4 and Mi Water Purifier

It now has a color display!



At the Smart Living 2020 event in Bengaluru, Xiaomi announced a host of products including new Mi TVs and a black colored Soundbar. The brand is insanely popular for its smartphones and now intends to expand its folio even further.

Last year around the same time, it launched the Mi Air Purifier and Mi Luggage. Now, the brand has finally launched the much awaited Mi Band 4 along with the Mi Water Purifier.

Mi Band 4

The Mi Band lineup has been an instant hit in the country due to its affordable pricing. In fact, the Mi Band has single handedly made Xiaomi a top wearable maker in the country. With the Mi Band 4, it aims to build upon those strengths such as long battery life, multiple forms of exercise tracking and water-proofing while bringing in a few useful additions.

It features a 0.95-inch color-AMOLED display panel along with a touch sensitive button. The wearable is powered by a 135mAh battery which is supposed to provide a battery life of about 20 days on a single charge. Charging takes a little less than two hours.

It comes with a six-axis accelerometer that can identify various swimming strokes and offer swolf scores, a feature especially beneficial for swimmers. The screen is capable of showing notifications from various apps and users can also control music playback of their smartphones.

The Mi Band 4 will be available for purchase starting September 19 at a price of INR 2,299 (US$ 32). Five band colour options are available, including black, blue, maroon, grey and red.

Mi Water Purifier

It combines Reverse Osmosis (RO) and Ultra-violet (UV) methods for purifying the water. It  has a seven litre tank for storing water after it has been purified. The UV-light for further purification has also been placed at the bottom of this storage tank so that the purified water remains clean.

Initial stages happen in the PP+Activated Carbon filter. This filter is capable of intercepting large and visible particles along with residual chlorine, colour, and odour.

Further, it can be connected to the Mi Home app that provides live TDS-tracking and one-tap ordering of new cartridges. With a DIY-approach, changing the filter is easy and setting up the purifier is simple. It is priced at INR 11,999 and will go on sale from via, Flipkart and Mi Homes starting September 29.


Samsung overtakes Xiaomi as top phone brand in India

As of Q4 2022



Attacking a huge smartphone market is difficult. With preferences constantly evolving, it can get tricky to figure out the best lineup to capture most of a market. Samsung, however, has just done it. In the last quarter of 2022, Samsung has taken the crown from Xiaomi as the bestselling smartphone brand in India.

India is an important market for most smartphone brands. It’s one of the largest markets in the world. However, despite its size, the biggest players are often those who offer more affordable devices for consumers. Budget is the name of the game if a brand wants to make it big in the country.

Things are changing, though. According to new market data (via Reuters), Samsung has nabbed the throne from the former leader, Xiaomi. In the last quarter of 2022, the Korean brand grabbed 20 percent of the market, while the latter only got 18 percent.

In a trend dubbed as premiumization, Indian consumers are reportedly enjoying more disposable income, resulting in more willingness to buy pricier products. Additionally, the report hints that consumers have started equating lower prices with inferior quality.

With the market trending towards more premium products, Samsung took the lead with a lineup that consists more of midrange to premium devices. It will also be interesting to see if Apple, an even more premium brand, can also make a dent in the Indian market.

SEE ALSO: Buyer’s Guide: Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra

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Apple is preparing to open its first stores in India

Based on new job listings



For one of the largest smartphone markets in the world, India is one of the rarer countries where Apple does not outright dominate. Undoubtedly, the company is trying to change that. Ongoing job listings in India are suggesting that Apple is ready to open its first brick-and-mortar store in the country.

First reported by Financial Times, Apple has posted job openings in India for several retail roles including for the iconic Genius Bar. Another clue even indicates that some spots have already been filled ahead of time. A few employees in the country have reportedly posted about their new jobs on LinkedIn.

Unfortunately, none of the job listings show how many stores are planned and where they will be. Narrowing things down by a bit, a few of the confirmed employees are from Mumbai and New Delhi. The report also does not indicate when the stores will open. However, since a few have already been hired, a grand opening might be coming soon.

Apple has a lot to gain by strengthening its foothold in India. The country is an important stronghold for smartphone companies. However, the company might find things harder as time goes by. The country recently dictated that brands must switch to USB-C if they want to sell their devices in India. All over the world, Apple remains the last stalwart against adopting the more universal standard.

SEE ALSO: Google throws more RCS-flavored shade at Apple

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India to enforce USB-C on all phones by 2024

Smartphones and wearables affected



Last year, the European Union made a lot of waves by announcing the impending enforcement of USB-C across all devices sold in the region. Other countries, such as Brazil, joined in by pondering its own version of the same policy. Then, as 2022 wound to a definitive close, India, skipping a more deliberative phase, has announced a sweeping enforcement of USB-C coming in 2025.

In approximately two years’ time, most devices sold within India must use USB-C ports (via Business Standard). More specifically, Indian lawmakers have included smartphones and wearables as part of the new policy. Like policies in other countries, India’s policy revolves around the drive to reduce e-waste from devices.

Naturally, as is the case in other countries, Apple is the brand most affected by the ruling. While most Android-based smartphones already use USB-C across the board, Apple’s device still rely on the proprietary Lightning cable, severing a significant chunk of the populating from the more universal standard.

The country is nothing to shrug off, either. India is one of the largest smartphone markets in the world. Though Android is much more prevalent than Apple, India’s new policy is certainly a significant speed bump for the iPhone maker.

Though Apple has publicly protested against the new policies, the company has also confirmed that it will comply with the new rules. While it has a slightly lengthier timeframe in India, the brand has to comply in the European Union by the end of 2024.

SEE ALSO: Apple will limit faster USB-C to iPhone 15 Pro duo

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