US Mobile to Become First Xiaomi and Meizu Carrier in USA
Chinese smartphone manufacturers are causing quite a stir worldwide, flooding markets with low cost handsets which appear so hard to resist on the spec sheets. The low cost market has evolved in the past few years, going from “low cost, low end” to “low cost, high end”, thanks to players like Xiaomi.
However, there was one major market of the world that remained uninfluenced directly from the value war going on in the low cost segment — USA. That is about to change as US Mobile has become the first carrier in the USA to start selling Xiaomi and Meizu smartphones.
According to PCMag, US Mobile has begun importing and selling Xiaomi and Meizu devices in the USA. This opens up a new frontier for Chinese smartphone giants to venture into. US Mobile has promised to provide service and support for the phones it sells, meaning that you no longer have to cross your fingers for (non-existent) after-sales support from China. The phones are also sold unlocked, so you are not restricted to US Mobile’s virtual network (which rides up on T-Mobile’s physical infrastructure).
There are a few caveats though. For starters, the phones released do not support LTE bands for the United States. This makes the device less of a choice for someone looking for a complete replacement for their existing device. They are not optimized for the networks of USA, as they are imported from China rather than developed for the U.S., so there are chances that you may not be able to fully utilize the device’s network capabilities. The phones sold are also not the latest the manufacturing companies have to offer either, with smartphones on sale currently restricted to the Xiaomi Redmi 2, Mi 3, Mi 4 and Meizu Note 2.
Edit: Also to note that this is not an official Xiaomi-US Mobile partnership, i.e US Mobile is not an authorised distributor. The phones sold by US Mobile will be imported, as mentioned early on in the article.
“U.S. consumers have traditionally had to compromise to afford incredible devices,” Ahmed Khattak, founder and CEO of U.S. Mobile, said in a statement to PC Mag. “Now, with the launch of our marketplace, we are thrilled to offer complete range of exceptional smartphones for low monthly payments and to give our customers access to exceptional phones otherwise not available in the U.S.” Khattak has also promised an ongoing relationship with Xiaomi and Meizu distributors, saying that their future devices may have U.S. LTE bands. You can find the phones in US Mobile’s Web shop.
The news itself may not be overly exciting, but this does signal the beginning of the transition that the rest of the world has made towards low cost devices. Entry of Chinese smartphone makes into USA will force all the other players to rethink their product lineup to combat the sudden increase in competitive value products. The end result, we hope, is that the consumers get an even sweeter deal.
What are your thoughts on the US Mobile’s decision to import and sell Xiaomi products? How do you feel this will impact the current market? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!