Realme India CEO Madhav Sheth responded to Manu Kumar Jain’s copy-cat jibe. Then POCO India head got involved

“Madhav Sheth said ‘a real innovative brand and market leader won’t behave like that’, response that elicited a reply from POCO head C Manmohan

Realme has accused Xiaomi of “mud-slinging on social media.” This statement was in response to a tweet by Xiaomi Vice President Manu Kumar Jain, in which he called Realme a “copy-cat brand” for introducing ads to its operating system, which Xiaomi’s MIUI has had for years. Realme’s CEO Madhav Sheth said, “it doesn’t suit brands to lower their corporate ethics and get into mud-slinging on social media… We are here to provide our users best of the experiences and Realme would rather focus on that.” Things quickly escalated and Xiaomi spin-off brand POCO’s head C Manmohan jumped in and told Realme to “stop giving a lecture… try to think of some original ideas to stop declining sales.”

The battle between the brands began earlier this month on Twitter, with Jain tweeting: “Funny! A copy-cat brand mocks us. Later this brand brings ads & some ppl start blaming us. Most brands push ads but only Xiaomi is bashed. Because we’ve been transparent about our business model. If any journalist wants to understand our internet business, I’m happy to talk!”

Sheth responded to it by saying that a brand should not lower its ethics and get into mud-slinging on social media as it only harms the overall industry sentiments. Looking at this, users on Twitter also joined in pointing Realme how POCO, a brand that has been recently spun off from Xiaomi as a standalone entity, is itself copying its ‘X2’ branding from Realme’s ‘X’ series and ‘Smooth AF’ tagline from OnePlus for its upcoming offering POCO X2 smartphone. Szymon Kopec, the former OnePlus product manager, had called out POCO for using the tagline.

Quoting the tweet, a user asked Sheth about his opinion on the matter, adding “wonder why Apple and OnePlus didn’t sue or accuse the world’s first copycat.” This “copycat” alludes to Xiaomi taking ‘inspiration’ from Apple in terms of smartphone design, layout of its retail stores, etc. In fact, Xiaomi was known as ‘the Apple of China’ in its early years, before it carved out a niche for itself and became a global brand.

The Realme CEO replied to this question by saying, “A real innovative brand and market leader won’t behave like that. Basic dignity and ethics should be maintained no matter how insecure you are of your competitor’s growth… We will focus on making #realme the best in 2020. Rest is their choice, we don’t bother.”

To this, C Manmohan from POCO said, Hilarious! A real #CopyCat brand that copied almost everything is giving a lecture. Instead of advice, maybe try to think of some original ideas to stop declining sales. Why should anyone be worried about a brand that declined 50% last quarter? अब वो “X” factor नहीं रहा boss!! (That ‘X’ factor is not there).” This is clearly a squabble that’s going to end any time soon, especially with the POCO X2 launch next week and Realme X50 Pro later in Q1.

POCO is scheduled to launch its first smartphone since 2018, the POCO X2, on February 4th in India. The handset will most likely be a mid-range offering that takes on the Realme X2.