Working with XiaomiAds: pros and cons

Publication date: 14 Feb 2023

Xiaomi Ads, an advertising network from Chinese mobile phone manufacturer Xiaomi, operates worldwide and is one of the important OEM sources of traffic (Original equipment manufacturer / “traffic inside the shell of phones”). After purchasing a smartphone, the company offers to select and install certain applications (security, file management, entertainment services) at the first launch. After that, the user sees advertisements of various formats when using these services.

Benefits of Xiaomi Ads

Xiaomi Ads allows advertising related to gambling.
In particular, you can promote sports betting sites and aggregator sites for sports odds, poker, bingo and roulette games, national or private lotteries, sites with bonuses and promotional offers.
However, gambling and betting advertisements can only be targeted at countries where they are permitted. The advertiser must be properly certified (gambling licence) with information about responsible gambling listed on the promoted website.

The potential audience for Xiaomi Ads is huge.
Xiaomi is the third largest smartphone maker in the world with a market share of 11%. Analyst company International Data Corporation (IDC) estimated that the company shipped 33 million smartphones at the end of the fourth quarter of 2022.
According to the results of 2022, Xiaomi took the first place in Russia in terms of smartphone sales. As Mobile Research Group specifies, its market share in units was 42%. TelecomDaily estimates that there are now more than 20 million Xiaomi smartphone users in Russia.
The website of the advertising network points out that “the platform covers more than 200 countries and regions, has more than 410 million active users abroad and supports more than 70 languages”.

Disadvantages of working with Xiaomi Ads

In February 2023, the Association of Professional Users of Social Networks and Messengers appealed to the Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS) with a request to check the Xiaomi advertising apps and services. The reason was systematic violations of the Russian law on advertising: showing misleading ads to users, as well as redirections to phishing sites.

  • A new tool for monitoring information and detecting misleading content has been introduced in Russia called the Oculus system.

Nevertheless, the possibility of blocking the Xiaomi Ads network, through which banned content is distributed, is so far minimal. If violations are detected, for the first time the company will receive a warning from the FAS demanding that the messages that violate the law should be blocked. In case the violations remain, the service could be fined a maximum of 500,000 roubles. Blocking a resource with inaccurate information or fraudulent actions is possible only by court order or the request of the prosecutor general’s office.

As for the liability of the advertisers of Xiaomi Ads, it depends on the qualification of their actions. The ad network’s algorithms are imperfect, therefore allowing it to bypass restrictions and post prohibited content.  Even with manual verification of ads, enough time passes before the violation is detected and blocked, allowing for an effective ad campaign.  If the advertiser is proven to be guilty of fraudulent activity, it could face criminal penalties.

In summary, the main drawback of Xiaomi Ads is the large number of unreliable ads, which undermines user confidence and can also limit the operation of the network itself in Russia.

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