If someone asked you to define Xiaomi, a phone manufacturer might not be an incorrect answer. After all, the company is famous for its smartphones by the same name and their MIUI Android Launcher. However, Xiaomi themselves would probably not give you any marks. Over the past year, they’ve been making it even clearer that they’re not just a phone manufacturer. No, they’re a technology company.
A technology company that’s launched many smart devices such as wearables, rice cookers, kettles and now a bicycle. Yes, Xiaomi’s latest gadget is a folding electric bicycle as part of its QiCycle brand.
Meet Xiaomi’s new electric bike
This new QiCycle is priced at $455. If you choose to get one, then you get an electric bike that can travel 45 kilometers on a single charge. It also comes with a companion app that logs your distance, speed, GPS location, calories burned, and more. The new QiCycle also has Shimano three-speed gears along with front and rear lights built into its frame. The entire bike with all these features weighs at 14.5 kilograms.
The previous QiCycle R1 was a non-folding electric bicycle with similar functionality. Built by iRiding (a startup Xiaomi invested in) the bike was available for around $3000. There are reports, which state that it’s the iRiding team not an internal one at Xiaomi that also built this new iteration of the QiCycle. However, Xiaomi has yet to confirm these reports.
Either way, this bike is one of Xiaomi’s newest offerings in China. The new QiCycle is designed to appeal to a larger audience compared to the original R1. The new QiCycle is being offered as a new cheaper alternative to getting around crowded Chinese cities. Crowded cities with a lot of congestion and where it’ll be facing stiff competition. In fact, in certain cities electric bikes outnumber cars.
However, the new QiCycle is expected to be hit by its creators. As it builds more and more gadgets, Xiaomi is slowly taking steps to truly redefine itself as a technology company. The question is: can this new QiCycle speed up the process? Only time will tell.