Xiaomi Inc., which makes China’s fast-selling smartphones, is looking to tap its international fan base to expand abroad, the Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday. The company is likely to begin sales of the handsets in Southeast Asia after unveiling them in Hong Kong and Taiwan, global vice president Hugo Barra was quoted as saying. It plans to use its fans in other markets to popularize the phones and overcome language and border barriers, the report said. Started in 2010 by Chinese entrepreneur Lei Jun, Xiaomi sells high-end phones at prices close to cost. Its flagship Mi 3 phone costs US$326, less than half the price of top models from Apple Inc. and Samsung Electronics Co. Xiaomi expects to sell about 20 million handsets in 2013, the report said.
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