Chinese smartphone manufacturer Xiaomi might discontinue its sub-brand POCO, according to analysts. There are two primary reasons behind the theory. First, the resignation of one of the top executives in charge of developing the POCO sub-brand. Second, Xiaomi is developing mid-to-premium range smartphones under the Redmi banner, a segment that was previously catered to by POCO.
Manu Kumar Jain, International Vice President and Head of Xiaomi India, stayed non-committal towards the POCO sub-brand in his recent interview with Economic Times. “We are currently unable to answer questions on the future of the Poco brand. We are currently developing products for India. But, we are not in a position to share details on the products or reveal a tentative launch date.”
However, in a separate email conversation, a spokesperson for Xiaomi said, “Nothing changes for Poco with the resignation of one employee. Work will continue as usual.” The employee in question is Jai Mani, Head of Product Development for POCO, who recently resigned. Analysts believe that Mi and Redmi are the defining platforms for Xiaomi, and POCO is overlapping both segments. Hence, killing the sub-brand makes more sense.
“POCO was launched with the simple intention of offering high-end performance at a basic cost with clear compromise in terms of design. The idea was to offer flagship performance to Xiaomi customers at a fraction of the cost. The move was welcomed with mixed reactions during its initial days.” revealed Navkinder Singh, Research Director, IDC India. “With Xiaomi now launching their K series with flagship performance, features, design and specifications at an aggressive price point, there is no reason for them to continue selling the Pocophone,” he added. It was earlier speculated that the Redmi K20 Pro (first impressions) would be launched as the POCO F2 in India, but since the phone launched under Redmi branding, it seems unlikely that we’ll see a new POCO device anytime soon.