Chinese company Xiaomi announced plans today to open 18 flagship stores across China. The stores will be modeled after Apple’s brick-and-mortar locations in many ways, but surprisingly the stores won’t actually sell the company’s two biggest product categories: smartphones and TVs.
Instead, Xiaomi’s new stores will sell phone and TV accessories, including handset cases, batteries, cables, its set-top streaming box and branded clothing. The company will also offer express device repair similar to Apple’s Genius Bar, and pick-up service for online orders in the stores.
Xiaomi is in the process of transforming its current service centers into full blown flagship stores, and says it hopes to complete the process by the end of the year. Speaking to CBN, Vice President Liwan Jiang said the company depends on services and accessories for most of its annual profits, noting that revenue this year is expected to hit CN¥100 million (roughly US$16.4 million), nearly double what Xiaomi saw in 2012.
The firm might not be a household name here in the U.S., though former Google exec Hugo Barra, who recently joined the company, is working to change that. Who knows? Perhaps soon we’ll even have Xiaomi stores in the United States.