Chinese phonemaker complains about counterfeiting

Saying that Chinese smartphone manufacturers are complaining about counterfeiting is like saying Manchester United complains about refereeing.

But hey, it happened. And if Manchester United can complain about a ref’s decision, so can the Chinese complain about having counterfeited smartphones.

Time to be more specific: Xiaomi, the biggest Chinese smartphone manufacturer, says the sales of its Mi Power Bank product (basically a takeaway battery) are far below the expected line, and the blame lies in counterfeited phones.

Sales of the company’s Mi Power Bank battery pack for smartphones hit 14.6 million units last year, less than half what the total should have been, Chief Executive Officer Lei Jun said at a press conference at the company’s headquarters in Beijing Thursday, Bloomberg reports.

“What is the biggest problem? There are many fakes,” Lei said. “If there were no counterfeits, our sales would be double or triple. The product has been recognised by everyone.”

The various configurations of the Mi Power Bank are being sold at prices between $7.90 (£5.17) and $21 (£13.73), meaning the company lost at least $115 million (£75.2 million) to counterfeits.

The devices are produced by Jiangsu, China-based Zimi Corp., one of the start-ups backed by Xiaomi.

The biggest irony in all of this is that Xiaomi is no stranger of ‘borrowing’ designs from other companies.

One of the new phones unveiled on Wednesday is a 5.7-inch device called the “Mi Note”, dangerously reminiscent of the 5.7-inch Galaxy Note phablet.

This just might be the beginning of the end for Chinese copycats. What better way to stop them, than to have a mighty Chinese manufacturer oppose them.