Xiaomi's smart bicycle will cost you US$3,000

A big departure from Xiaomi's usual pricing for the everyman

Xiaomi’s expanded quite a bit beyond smartphones. TVs, air purifiers, smartbands have all joined the company’s product line but its latest, a super-expensive smart bicycle is a little out of the norm. For one, it’s super-expensive, not something that Xiaomi usually retails and what’s more the bicycle is more expensive than competing smart bicycles.

Bicycles are a common and popular mode of transportation in China so it makes sense why Xiaomi might have an interest in them. But what’s puzzling is Xiaomi’s investment in a company called iRiding that is marketing a bicycle to be launched soon, named the QiCycle. Xiaomi will be selling the bicycle on its own China-based e-commerce platform and it will be selling the bicycle for US$3,000 (RM12,180).

What is a smart bicycle anyway? In most cases, it means that the bicycle will somehow be linked to some device, usually a smartphone. The bike also has some interesting features that include motion sensors and battery-assisted, though not dependent, pedaling.

The bicycle is apparently just one of a series of products created by Xiaomi partners, products the company doesn’t itself make but will market on its e-commerce platform. Expect the bicycle to pop up by the end of the month in China as rumoured, though Xiaomi has not made any comment on it as yet.

Still, what’s likely in this scenario is that Xiaomi will probably make a distinction between its own-brand products and still make space for products that don’t exactly fit within its usual price range, via partners. Analysts have criticised the company for perhaps spreading itself too thin but who can fault Xiaomi for eyeing a bigger piece of the market besides just smartphones. After all, in China smartphone makers have proliferated to the extent it seems as though a new budget smartphone is always around the corner.

Check out the latest on what's going on in the weird, wonderful world of bicycles.

[Source: Slashgear, Image:Ifworlddesign]