Xiaomi passes Apple to become the 2nd biggest smartphone company in China
Xiaomi has been called out a few times for being an Apple copycat. The company has denied these claims, but has admitted that Apple is an "inspiration". When you look at the market though, Xiaomi is growing much faster, and has passed Apple to become the 2nd biggest smartphone company in China. So, if Xiaomi is a copycat, it has found a way to be more popular than the original (be less expensive.)
According to the newest data from the Kantar Worldpanel ComTech report, which covers the odd span of January to May 2014, Xiaomi made up 21% of smartphone sales in China. This puts the company solidly ahead of Apple, which stands at 16% of smartphone sales, but still behind of Samsung. Samsung is at 23% of smartphone sales in China; so, Xiaomi is closing in on Samsung, and could well become the number one manufacturer soon enough.
Interestingly, Xiaomi is getting the vast majority of its sales from users who are upgrading from an older smartphone, rather than attracting feature phone users. Kantar says that 70% of Xiaomi buyers are upgrading from another smartphone, and 20% are upgrading from an older Xiaomi device. Most of those who switched came from Samsung, which pushes the idea that Xiaomi could soon become number one in the Chinese market.