Xiaomi recently revealed that it has shipped over 100 million Redmi Note phones to date and well, over 80 million users are happy with its custom Android skin – MIUI. Xiaomi is well-aware of its popularity and growing userbase, thus, serving ads in MIUI helps them rake in additional profits.
This practice didn’t bode well with MIUI users, who rebuked the Chinese giant and have openly criticized the presence of ads and app recommendations across the UI and native apps. We ourselves have been vocal about the issue that “ads in MIUI hurt the complete experience,” but Xiaomi says it’s a core part of the business model. We shouldn’t expect these ads to go away anytime soon.
Talking to Livemint at the Redmi Note 8 series launch earlier this week, Muralikrishnan B, COO, Xiaomi India stated, “Will we continue focusing on Internet services? Yes, because that is part of our core business model.” He further cited the example of tech bigwigs like Facebook and Google, who he said have also built their business on ads.
Xiaomi doesn’t see serving ads an unfair practice but will maintain certain quality standards, so the ads are not intrusive and affect the UX for MIUI users.
Muralikrishnan continued talking about Xiaomi’s MIUI plans, where he said that “A lot of people confuse ads and recommendations. We probably need to reinforce the difference between the two clearly.” And that’s true. The company may have started serving ads in the past, but the backlash and gravitation of users to rival brands, have forced Xiaomi to cutback. It has since nixed a lot of intrusive ads and limited the monetization strategy to app recommendations – but they are still a lot of them scattered around the UI.
Well, the company will continue to serve such content, including recommendations in its apps and services, but is clear about how to make it available in MIUI. It will continue to serve ads in certain other sections as well, so if you were thinking that ads would finally vanish with MIUI 11 (read features right here), well Xiaomi says they won’t. However, I already have a guide to turn off ads in MIUI ready for you, so check it out.