In late October 2017, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella visited the Xiaomi retail store in Beijing. During the visit, the head of the Redmond IT giant was accompanied by Lei Hong, the founder and head of Xiaomi and Wang Xiang, the head of her department for international development. After getting acquainted with Xiaomi products, the head of Microsoft was seriously interested in the development of the Chinese company, which ultimately led to the signing of an agreement on mutual understanding. Within the framework of the agreement concluded today, the companies will be able to strengthen cooperation, work together on new products and introduce innovative technological developments in them, the press release on the official site of Xiaomi says.
In addition, the agreement states that both companies will work together to develop cloud technologies and will cooperate in the field of artificial intelligence. Microsoft in turn will help Xiaomi learn new markets for the company and will promote its mobile and smart devices.
"Xiaomi is one of the most innovative and fast-growing Chinese companies, which is rapidly gaining popularity in different countries. Microsoft's unique development, its expertise in artificial intelligence and products such as Azure, can help Xiaomi create even more technologically advanced solutions for users, "said Garrri Schum, head of the research department of artificial intelligence.
After signing the agreement, Wang Xiang, the head of the Xiaomi International Development Department, stressed that cooperation with Microsoft will help the Chinese electronics manufacturer to succeed in new initiatives for it, and to strengthen existing positions.
It is known that companies will work closely in several directions.
Among them in the contract appear cloud technologies – they will allow Xiaomi to increase its user base and provide devices with full and modern access to cloud services on the international market. In addition, both sides will work on the development of laptops and similar devices – all of them will also be promoted by Microsoft on the international market.
Cortan's voice assistant, created by Microsoft Corporation, can now be accessed not only by Master Chifu, owners of smartphones and PCs. It is expected that the companies will discuss in the near future the integration of Cortana in Mi Ai Speaker, a "smart" column from Xiaomi, which although not so popular in Europe and the US, but is selling well in China itself and a number of other countries. It is assumed that the share of Xiaomi's sales in the segment of smart columns will grow substantially due to such a merger, opening up new opportunities and markets for the company.
Partners will work together on projects in the field of artificial intelligence, computer vision and speech. In addition, there is a strong interaction between the development teams Xiaomi and Microsoft, such as Bing, Edge, Cortana, XiaoIce, SwiftKey, Translator, Pix, Cognitive Services and Skype. Probably, many of the services and applications in the current or improved form will appear in future Xiaomi devices.
Xiaomi was founded in 2010. In just eight years of its existence, she was able to achieve recognition in her home country and a number of foreign countries. Now it is one of the most dynamically developing manufacturers of consumer electronics and smart devices in the world. Microsoft is a serious developer and an undisputed world leader in sales of commercial software. With the proper level of cooperation, the Redmond Corporation and the young Chinese company will surely be able to shake the established balance on the market.