|Chinese smartphone vendor Xiaomi has made a name for itself by selling iPhone-like gear for almost a third of the price of Apple products. It may sound too good to be true, but the company is managing to sell millions of phones and is already kicking off a global expansion. So how does it pull it off?For one thing, Xiaomi claims to price its phones just above their costs. But company officials also point to its iconoclastic business model, which eschews the financial burden of using traditional marketing and distribution practices, and relies on the Internet to fuel sales. It’s made Xiaomi into a company that doesn’t operate like a typical smartphone vendor, but still successful enough to become one of China’s hottest tech firms.|
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