Wuzhen, China: Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi Corp plans to launch more than ten 5G phones in 2020, CEO Lei Jun said Sunday, speaking at the global Internet conference in the eastern Chinese city of Wuzhen.
Lei’s comments come when the company faces intense competition in its local market by rival Huawei Technologies. Last month, Xiaomi launched the Xiaomi Mi 9 Pro, the company’s first 5G phone for the domestic market.
According to Lei, the demand for the phone exceeded the expectations of the company and caused problems in the supply chain. The reception of the device has led Xiaomi to launch 5G models for high, medium and low price levels next year.
“People in the industry fear that next year 4G models will not be sold, this is a step that has no choice but to take,” said Lei. “So we hope that operators can accelerate their expansion of 5G base stations.” Xiaomi’s share price has fallen steadily last year as China’s smartphone market becomes more competitive. In September, the company announced that it would plan a share buyback of $ 1.5 billion.
In the second quarter of 2019, Xiaomi occupied 11.8% of China’s smartphone market, compared to 13.9% the previous year according to research firm Canalys.
All other major Chinese brands suffered a decrease in sales volumes as consumers turned to Huawei, driven in part by patriotism. The Shenzhen-based phone manufacturer became the center of tensions between the US. UU. And China in May, when Washington effectively asked US companies to stop supplying parts.
However, Xiaomi has been successful in Europe, where it remains a relatively new player on the continent. The company’s market share in the region during the second quarter of 2019 reached 9.6%, compared to 6.5% the previous year, which makes it one of the fastest-growing phone brands in the region.