results in new category
5G rollout expected to accelerate category growth
The introduction of the IoT Ecosystem category in the BrandZ™ China Top 100 anticipates major changes across categories, as brands develop the products and services and form the alliances that will reshape how people live in the Internet of Things 5G era of extreme internet speed and connectivity.
Inaugurating the category is Haier, the appliance maker that has transformed its business from being a maker of products to becoming a supplier of home solutions in an ecosystem that includes both Haier’s products and services, as well as those jointly developed and provided by partners.
The resilience provided by the IoT strategy became evident during the COVID-19 pandemic. When factories in China shut down during the height of the pandemic, the flexibility of Haier’s management model, called Rendanheyi, enabled it to reopen most production by the end of February and quickly resume all aspects of its business.
Haier Smart Home has taken two major measures to advance the IoT transformation. On the one hand, the company name was changed to Haier Smart Home Co. Ltd.; on the other hand, Haier Smart Home set up a full- scenario smart home experience center, in Shanghai, an enormous physical store called Haier Smart Home Shanghai 001 Experience Center. Haier Smart Home
has opened many similar experience centers throughout China.
The two-level Shanghai store is organized around room settings that feature both a wide range of Haier appliances, home security and air quality systems, as well as furniture and home furnishings available from Haier partners. Most of the appliances are from Haier’s premium Casarte brand.
Haier started the process of internationalization as early as 1998. Haier’s overseas companies will adopt their ecosystem brand strategy and provide global users with smart home scenario solutions, such as the Internet of Food Internet of Clothing Internet of Air and Internet of Water.
Meanwhile, other home appliances brands are moving toward the ecosystem approach. And in the technology category, Xiaomi, best known for smartphones, also offers TVs and recently introduced washing machines, air conditioners, and kitchen appliances in an attempt to develop as an IoT ecosystem.