Last month, Xiaomi CEO Lei Jun set out an ambitious three-year roadmap for the company which involved transforming the company into a variety store of “about 40 kinds of electronic products.”
It appears the internet giant has come one product closer to that goal with the release of a USB electric mosquito repellent device.
The gadget is part of Xiaomi’s ‘Mijia’ (MiHome) range, which also includes water filters, air filters and a rice cooker. MiJia products are mostly unified under a single app, though unlike other devices in the range, the mosquito repellent device doesn’t appear to be an actual Iot device, rather it is just a USB-enabled accessory.
The round unit, which measures 4.6 centimeters across and retails for 29 yuan (about $4USD), heats a small chemical-infused pad that in turn emits a repellent vapor. While the method is not popular in many Western countries, a variety of electrical mat or vapor mosquito repellent devices are available in Asia, and are a common sight in Chinese hotels.
The company says the gadget can last over 28 hours on their largest power bank, and can be used with any conventional USB power source.
Xiaomi, which rocketed to cult status with their budget smartphones, runs an innovation program that essentially incubates external hardware projects that are then released under the Mi brand.
Popular recent examples include the upcoming Xiaomi drones, a smart bike, a GoPro-like action camera and their scooter range, which was the result of the company’s acquisition of Segway parent, Ninebot. Unlike these devices, the mosquito repellent accessory is a fairly straight-forward offering, and is not likely to exit the Chinese market any time soon.