Horror of Horrors, Xiaomi’s Selling Refurbs?

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January 23, 2015 by ...

Benevolent Xiaomi has conceived of a master plan- offload used phones to India. In what has to be the head-scratcher of 2015, Xioami is going to peddle refurbs to its second largest market.

Yeah, you heard me right. Xiaomi, a discount phone supplier with marginal quality is going to resell old units, WTF?

Excuse my cynicism, but isn’t buying a second-hand Xiaomi like purchasing a used cigarette? Sure, it probably has some nicotine left, but do you really want to smoke it?

Well, selling used phones is precisely what Lei Jun and crew is doing, and to the Indian market no less. I should laud it as a more noble move then peddling defective handsets to resellers and calling them new, as they are rumored to have done in the past, but I cannot. This strategy has me flummoxed. For the life of me I cannot conceive of what would possess anyone to buy a second-hand Xiaomi.

Intrigued? Then, follow me on a journey of the damned

Xiaomi kit is shaky at best
People are harping about how great Xiaomi is. They pine on after the whole ‘unboxing thing’ and then proceed to fawn over the beauty of the sparkly new phone. But shouldn’t that be the case? I mean the kit is all new. Just like a freshly peeled banana it’s mouthwatering, but give it a few minutes. And in the same way that the banana turns browner than toast, so to will your Xiaomi be transformed.

All the glory boys are cheering because their gadgets are fresh out of the box. The Xiaomi goods simply haven’t had time to break yet. But trust me, they will.

The thing is that buying Xiaomi is like playing the lottery but with better odds. Your chances of getting a loser are only 1 in 10, or at least that’s what communist party tests showed. Anecdotal evidence is not so kind, however.

My Xiaomi stable is littered with studs, duds and puds


Xiaomi pulled off a ying-yang with the 5000 mAh power brick being Cain to the 16000 version, it’s Abel twin. The former is at odds with me over its duty to perform. Like that beauty in a Economics 101, it defines it’s right to exist in its aesthetic appeal rather than work product. It’s taken to resting after charging one phone instead of two-point five, as Lei’s propaganda promised. An IPod clone bookend is not what I had in mind, pre-purchase and even less so now. That Chinese beauty Is about to find herself being resold in India if she doesn’t change her slothful ways. The bigger version, however, is doing just fine.

As for the rest of the family, the 1S has held up about as well as carrion, but at least it still works. The same cannot be said for one of my two sets of Xiaomi headphones. One of that pair didn’t make it past the thirty day mark, but it’s bro is doing just fine.

Counting the carnage and what it means for India
All told I’ve owned two phones and the shelf life of one was bettered by a Twinkie. The other works as of this moment, but only time will tell about its true build integrity.

Phones 1 winner, 1 loser

As for power bricks, it’s a 50/50 split as well. As I said, both work, but only one does it regularly,

Power bricks 1 winner 1 gimp

Last on the list is MiPhones. Once again I let the cat out of the bag, one winner and one loser. It’s a good thing I doubled up on my purchase. Of the two sets I own, only one still has both buds. As I’m blessed with a pair of ears, a singleton will not suffice.

Headphones 1 winner .5 winner .5 loser

Where does this leave us?
Doing the math we see how miserably Xiaomi has failed. With just over one-half of their kit working as promised, India should be concerned. I mean if Xioami fails to deliver on 50% or even 10% of its new products, then what’s the prognosis for refurbs?

If pressed to comment, I’d say that buying a Xiaomi refurb is akin to playing Russian roulette with double barrel shotgun. Ya, it’s that bad.

I’m going to stay tuned and hope for the best, although my gut tells me otherwise.


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