Apple’s Biggest Rival In China Can’t Stop Exploding

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Ryan Pickrell China/Asia Pacific Reporter
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Chinese phone company Xiaomi, which quickly overtook Apple and Samsung in China by making cheap knockoffs, can’t seem to stop its phones from exploding.

Weibo reports another Xiaomi Mi 5 smartphone exploded Saturday, only a few days after a user in Noida, a city in Indian state Uttar Pradesh, informed Xiaomi the battery inside his smartphone combusted.

The user in Noida said that his Xiaomi Mi 4 suddenly burst into flames while he was sitting at his office desk. Fortunately, the man wasn’t injured in the resulting explosion.

In recent years, there have been major pushes in China for increased support for “made-in-China” products, but while many Chinese citizens want to offer their support, they are frustrated with the quality of the products.

Although these products tend to be much cheaper than foreign competitors, the quality and overall functionality often pales in comparison. One Internet user, critical of Chinese phone brands, said, “Chinese phone brands don’t even look like real brands, and you can’t even talk about quality when it comes to these products.”

In the same thread, another said that over the years, he has tried to use “made-in-China” mobile phones but has only ended up with a large collection of problems.

Xiaomi has said it will further investigate the matter, and while it would seem like Chinese phone issues would help foreign competitors like Apple, it’s unlikely.

Already-established Chinese companies are willing to put up a fight to maintain a competitive edge. Foreign tech companies also regularly encounter pressure from the Chinese government, which is keen on protecting domestic businesses.

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