This may seem like a surprise at first because Xiaomi has exclusive partnership with Flipkart only, but I would like to tell you that it’s just a result of company’s marketing strategy as bunch of lucky buyers have started reselling their units.
We know that Xiaomi Mi3 was being sold via its Flash Sales model on every Tuesday and these Tuesdays were taking the company to new highs every week. When this unique sales strategy combines with company’s word-of-mouth and social channels based marketing strategy, we get the hype on which this smartphone is sitting. Now, to cash that hype some lucky buyers who have got their units are willing to sell them off for higher price on eBay and OLX. That’s how this phone has suddenly become available on the online market!
After five fabulous Tuesdays, it’s being said that 75,000 units of Xiaomi Mi3 have been sold through Flipkart. Gaining these numbers within one mere month of launch is quite an accomplishment for any Chinese brand in India, where Chinese is still a synonym of “cheap”.
If we look at the features of this smartphone, the hype seems to be justified. Mi3 comes with a 2.3 GHz Snapdragon 800 processor, 2GB of RAM, Adreno 330 GPU, 5-inch full-HD display and a highly customized version of Android 4.4. Combine these features with a price tag of Rs. 13,999 and you get the cheapest device that can compete with the high-end devices like Nexus 5, Xperia Z and even Galaxy S4. The hype for such a jaw-dropping deal is obvious, especially if it’s backed by a carefully crafted marketing strategy.
Purchasing a Xiaomi Mi3 from Flipkart is like booking a Tatkal ticket for a long route with only one train from the website of IRCTC. You need to act fast otherwise you may lose the chance. But in case of Mi3, you need to act faster and faster with each passing Tuesday. When Mi3 went on sale for the first time, Flipkart crashed temporarily and soon reported within 40 minutes that the device was out of stock. Then came the next Tuesday on July 29th and second stock dried within 5 seconds. On top of that, the third stock of this crazily-selling device sold out within 2.4 seconds. The momentum is still not dying and it is expected that it will continue for another one month or so.
To worsen the scenario, Xiaomi is releasing limited number of units of the device even after the evident demand. This is what is sparking the parallel selling of this device at higher price on eBay and OLX. Some of these units are even in sealed condition, selling for as high as Rs. 20,000 with an average price of Rs. 16,000-17,000. But you know what’s even more interesting? People are willing to buy it for such crazy prices! In fact, some people (the really foolish ones) are willing to pay even 20,000 for it.
According to Manu Jain, who is overseeing Xiaomi’s operations in India, the company is requesting OLX and eBay to take down such ads, but they can’t do much about it because reselling a smartphone is not illegal. We recommend our readers to refrain from buying the product from any other retailer than Flipkart.
PS: The next flash sale of Xiaomi Mi3 is happening on the August 26th, 2014. In case if you haven’t registered for it, go here.