Xiaomi to Continue its Quest for High-end Products With Big Models

The voice assistant of Xiaomi cellphones will start the internal testing of the big model.

Credit: Visual China

Credit: Visual China

BEIJING, Aug 16 (TMTPost) —— Lei Jun, the founder of the Xiaomi Group, gave his fourth personal annual speech since 2020 at the China National Convention Center in Beijing on Monday evening and held a new product conference.

Lei said that the voice assistant AI big model of 1.3 billion parameters was tested on the cell phone side in April. The company has begun the internal test of the big model version of the voice assistant product called Xiao AI.

"Xiaomi focused on light-weighting and on-premise big models, which is different from other Internet companies," said Lei. The big model team was established at the beginning to focus on making the big model of ten billion parameters to be lightweight. Xiaomi currently trained the model "MiLM-6B" of six billion parameters, which ranked first among large models within ten billion parameters in the two lists of C-EVAL and CMLLU.

Lei also said that he has run through the large model of 1.3 billion parameters on the phone, and has enabled the model of 6 billion parameters to do cloud computing in some scenarios.

Being high-end is the keyword of the annual speeches of Xiaomi since 2020. Lei recalled how Xiaomi was determined to be high-end during the past three years.

"The past three years of Xiaomi’s high-end exploration is my most painful, but also the most rewarding growth in the 10 years," said Lei.  The phone "Xiaomi 10" on sale in early 2020 is the company’s initial attempt to be high-end, followed by the "Xiaomi 11" in early 2021 and "The Xiaomi 12" on sale at the end of 2021. Sales are less than expected, and losses are serious, which makes the company have an internal disagreement on the high-end strategy.

Xiaomi held a large-scale internal strategy discussion after the Spring Festival in 2022, and all general managers of Xiaomi Group participated in the discussion. Lei made clear at that the meeting that Xiaomi was going to follow the high-end strategy. "In the face of fierce competition in the cell phone industry, conducting high-end strategy to realize technical breakthroughs is crucial in helping Xiaomi win the survival and development in the future, and there is no discussion on this issue," said Lei.

In Lei's view, the launch of the small screen flagship "Xiaomi 13" at the end of 2022 marks the focus of the design of Xiaomi to be changed from high parameters, and configuration to users' experience with no weak points, which turned out to be successful. Xiaomi achieved a breakthrough in the high-end strategy.

From the perspective of data, although the gross profit margin of the cell phone business has improved, Xiaomi's cell phone market share did not significantly increase since the implementation of the high-end strategy in three years. Apple took the market share of Huawei after Huawei withdrew from the high-end market. According to Xiaomi group’s financial report, the gross profit margin of the cell phone business has increased from 8.1% in the first quarter of 2020, to 11.2% in the first quarter of 2023.

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