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Xiaomi set to launch follow-up to iPhone rival

The strong following for Apple’s iPhone franchise has meant other manufacturers have struggled to grab a larger slice of the smartphone pie. However, this may all be set to change with the news that Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi is set to release a follow-up to its iPhone challenger, the M1, next week.

The device is set to feature Qualcomm’s powerful quad-core APQ8064 Snapdragon chip, and if the M1 is anything to go by it should enter the market to significant acclaim.

Xiaomi was virtually an unknown entity a couple of years ago but the manufacturer quickly made its mark in the highly-competitive Chinese smartphone market with the launch of the 1,999 Yuan (£200) M1. The smartphone comes complete with a dual core processor and has been described by many as a high-end device.

What can we expect from the latest device?

According to reports, the device is set to make its debut on 16 August and could feature a 28nm Qualcomm chip as well as a larger screen.

Analysts have heaped praise on Xiaomi. IDC’s Ian Song, said:

“We are bullish on Xiaomi’s MIUI. MIUI itself is a capable variant of Android with Xiaomi’s own suite of apps that enhances the user experience. More importantly, Xiaomi was able to tie together its OS strategy with an attractively designed and priced handset – M1– to create viral demands in China.”

Mr Song continued:

“IDC believes Xiaomi is on the right track with first creating a great user experience, then putting it on a desirable device, all of which will be instrumental in getting its users to MIUI-based service, thus enlarging its services based revenues, and creating sticky user experiences not unlike what Apple has done.”

Sales of the M1 are said to have reached as many as three million, and the smartphone-maker’s fortunes were boosted by an injection of US$216m in funding in June, giving it an estimated value US$4bn. This is on top of the US$90m in VC funding that Xiaomi was said to have received last year.

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