Is Xiaomi Better than Samsung? (The All-New Case Study 2021)

We analyzed the mobile phone industry for the past 10 years to find answers to the question – Is Xiaomi better than Samsung?

Without a doubt, you are going to learn:

  • What is wrong with Samsung?
  • Common Samsung problems today?
  • Why is Xiaomi so good?
  • How does Xiaomi’s sub-brand marketing strategy beat Samsung’s?
  • And lots more.

Now it’s time to share what we found.

What is Wrong with Samsung?

Samsung is in TROUBLE!

The company’s last flagship phones like the Galaxy S21 series only sold 13.5 million units after 6 months. Comparing this to the 20 million units they sold this time last year, the 37 million they sold this time, the year before on the S10 series, with the almost 100 million units that Apple sold with the iPhone12 in the same time frame, it’s becoming pretty clear that Samsung is losing its grip.

Yes, analysis shows that the brand is currently valued at $102.62bn, with global revenue of about $200.6bn, but are these the right kind of metrics to tell whether a brand is failing or not?

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Samsung is currently being overtaken in key markets around the world, as we can see in this recent post by Techradar.

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Even their leader is currently in jail for bribery as seen in this report by The Wall Street Journal.

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That’s not all!

Samsung company just entered a management crisis where the entire mobile division is being reviewed to find out what’s wrong.

But, what is wrong with Samsung?

It’s not like Samsung just woke up and suddenly started producing low-grade phones. Their recent Galaxy S21 flagships are cheaper and better than last year’s phones.

Their foldable phones are market-leading, but it’s quite obvious, looking at the company’s output as discussed earlier, that the company is struggling.

Must Read: Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 Complete Review...

The answer to this big question, or at least a big part of the answer is Xiaomi. But, is Xiaomi better than Samsung?

Is Xiaomi Better than Samsung?

To see if Xiaomi is better than Samsung, we based our comparison on the following:

  1. Market structure & management
  2. Value
  3. Branding vs sub branding
  4. Online channels & distribution
  5. High quality range of products

#1: Market Structure & Management

Xiaomi as a brand launched officially in 2010, that’s just about 11 years ago – but fast-forward 4 years later, by 2014, they had overtaken Samsung in China for the biggest smartphone makers.

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By 2018, they had beaten Samsung for the top spot in India. Now, fast-forward another 7 years later, Xiaomi beats Apple to become the second-biggest smartphone seller in the world, in 2021, behind Samsung, and it’s still growing.

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But all these don’t make sense!

How is Xiaomi better than Samsung?

Well, one major advantage that Xiaomi has, because of how they started is because their market structure has been built around being a digital-first company. This has allowed Xiaomi to be more efficient than Samsung in every aspect.

Every aspect of Xiaomi’s business strategy, from their marketing to their production lines, is built with online in mind.

They utilize online marketing strategies such as flash sales and fan events to capitalize on free media.

Xiaomi-flash-sales

That is, rather than opting for traditional but expensive billboards and TV adverts, they’ve basically structured themselves to avoid the extra cost and bureaucracy that comes with having larger offline companies.

Xiaomi will only have a physical store when they want to focus on products that require physical demonstration. But, most importantly, Xiaomi has been able to massively streamline its staff.

Xiaomi exceeds Samsung in sales with only 20,000 full-time employees than Samsung’s own 300,000 employeeds

The company has been able to exceed Samsung in sales with only about 7% of the number of full-time employees of Samsung.

#2: Value

Will you say that Xiaomi is better than Samsung in value?

And how is Xiaomi better than Samsung in value?

Well, the truth’s that Xiaomi phones when compared to Samsung’s are really cheap! Xiaomi’s high regard for product cost savings, combined with the company’s disregard for high-profit margins just goes to show that the company has decided to make their phones cheaper.

Xiaomi is really different!

Although cheap, Xiaomi phones still come with the premium and hardware-software of phones that people in Europe were spending twice as much money on.

Unlike every other enthusiast brand, Xiaomi has been able to stay in the same lane. They’re still out here in 2021, maximizing every possible spec a smartphone should have, and cramming them down to $200 phones.

And if you have any more doubts about how is Xiaomi better than Samsung, all you have to do is look at its resale value.

A product's resale value is a very good gauge of how much value a product actually provides when you strip away all its brand power and marketing.

If you’ve ever tried to sell a Samsung phone, you might end up pretty much heartbroken when you realize how much value you’ve lost.

For instance, let’s consider the Galaxy A52 and the Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro, both 2021 phones. The Samsung Galaxy A52 launched at £400, and the Redmi Note 10 Pro at £270, but now, a quick search on Amazon shows these two devices selling for almost exactly the same amount.

xiaomi-vs-samsung-resale-value

Branding vs Sub-Branding

Sub-branding is actually one concept that helps us settle all doubts about how is Xiaomi better than Samsung.

With respect to the previously discussed session, value, one may wonder – hey, Xiaomi does make expensive phones too!

What about the Mi 11 Ultra and Mi Mix fold that is basically the same price as the Samsung counterpart?

Yea, this is true!

But the way Xiaomi is able to break this down, by having the Mi 11 Ultra that costs as high as $1435, and still have smartphones like the Redmi Note 10 Pro that costs just about $358.00 and still being able to serve insane value in the budget and mid-range segment is through the concept of sub-brands.

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The concept of sub-brands has settled all reasonable doubts about how is Xiaomi better than Samsung. Xiaomi can be broken down into 3-sub-brands:

  • Redmi
  • Poco
  • Mi

But with Samsung, it seems like the company’s just fighting against itself.

Some part of Samsung is aware that if they make their mid-range phones too good, then they are going to be so similar to their flagship phones that they’re just going to cannibalize their own sales.

So, Samsung smartphones of $400 and below are not just so competitive in the market. But with Xiaomi, with the use of sub-brands like Redmi and Poco, the company is now able to target these more budget-conscious segments, thus being able to go all out and make these features and as spec-rich, as they want to, but still keeping enough differentiation such that there’s still room for their luxury Mi flagship phones.

#4: Online Channels & Distribution

A few things have happened that have helped us settle doubts of how is Xiaomi better than Samsung, one of which was the Coronavirus outbreak in 2019.

Being stuck at home, people have very quickly transitioned to online shopping, and if you can remember as earlier discussed in this post, that Xiaomi is built around being digital-first, so the difference is quite clear as to when shopping online and shopping offline.

When shopping offline, people are more concerned about how the phone feels in the hand and the perceived quality, how spaced out the products are and the measurable specs of the phone as compared to others.

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But with online shopping, you’re more concerned about the full specifications of the phone – does it have a higher refresh rate than an iPhone? does it have a better battery capacity than a Samsung? And in the case where all the info is right there in front of you on a screen, Xiaomi’s phones just sense!

This is what they are built for, to make Xiaomi better than Samsung…

As we move deeper into the era of online shopping, the internet allows people to very quickly pick the best product from each one. The more blog review posts like this they’ll read, the more tech videos they’ll watch, the more they’ll put aside any pre-conception they have about brands, and just buy whatever the best-valued product is.

Without all reasonable doubt, this is what will make Xiaomi better than Samsung.

#5: High-Quality Range of Products

Yes, Samsung makes smartphones, TVs, smartwatches, and many more, but Xiaomi makes all that too. They also make user-friendly shavers, scooters, robot dogs, and even flower monitors.

Must Read: Xiaomi launches its First Robot Dog, the CyberDog in 2021...

They are literally into hundreds of ecosystem products across every possible category, and they’ve built each of them as a hook.

Xiaomi makes sure that all its products are good in their own rights, they try to make each product the best-valued product within that category.

The best part?

Xiaomi doesn’t really need to make a profit…

How?

xiaomi-ecosystem

Well, all these products basically, serve as is as entry points into Xiaomi’s entire ecosystem of products. This even entices users to want to get more Xiaomi products for themselves, at a surprisingly affordable price.

Conclusion

Just 2 years ago, almost 86% of Samsung users said they’ll also upgrade to a Samsung, but now, the value is down to 74%.

Yes, we’re still at the stage that it’s pretty hard to decide how is Xiaomi better than Samsung since Samsung has more value than Xiaomi, and just having the Samsung logo on a product will still add more value to it than having a Xiaomi logo on that same product, but the fact still remains that, things are not heading in the right direction for Samsung.

Now I’d Love to Hear from You:

What are your thoughts?

  • Is Xiaomi better than Samsung?
  • If YES, why?
  • If NO, why?

Let me know by leaving a comment below!

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