Do you think you have a better chance of convincing Angelina Jolie for a date than buying Xiaomi Mi3? Do you think booking a ticket through Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) is less painful than buying Mi3 on Flipkart? What if someone ensures that you definitely get one tomorrow at the flash sale? If you are one of those buyers who desperately want to grab a piece of the pie, the Apple of China, then the startup BuyHatke can help.
Started by IIT-Kharagpur graduates, BuyHatke is a product and price discovery platform. The website grabs results from various online shopping portals and provides the best deal to the customer who can then be redirected to the shopping portal offering the deal. It also has a Chrome extension called CompareHatke which helps in comparing the best prices across different portals.
“We were looking to buy a gift online for a friend and even after searching for three hours, we were not sure about getting the best deal. We noticed that there are huge discrepancies in the online deals. Hence, we started out BuyHatke to solve the price disparity across different portals,” said Gaurav Dahake, Founder and CEO of BuyHatke.
“We noticed that a lot of people were frustrated on not getting Mi3 at the flash sale on Flipkart. People wanted us to solve the issue, and hence we came up with a solution, ensuring people that if the procedure is followed properly, they would get the phone by tomorrow,” he added.
The Bangalore-based startup recommends a few steps on its promotion page to ensure that the users are able to purchase the Mi3 tomorrow. The users have to register themselves on Flipkart for the Xiaomi sale beforehand to be eligible for the purchase. They have to install the Comparehatke addon and subscribe to Xiaomi Mi3 alert from their extension options page. The users can also access it by right clicking on the BuyHatke logo in the Chrome bar and clicking on options.
The buyers have to ensure that they have the Chrome browser open and they are logged into Flipkart with a good internet connection at least five minutes before the sale time. The extension should not be in the “disabled” state at the time. The Chrome extension would open a new tab of Xiaomi Mi3 product page where it would add the product into the cart when the sale starts. The users do not have to close the tab before the purchase ends.
The startup claims to have tested the solution on different occasions and every time the product is added into the cart in less than 0.1 second. “Right before the sale begins we would start pressing the ‘Buy Now’ button. The extension would do it with a great speed and add the product to the cart,” he explained. The BuyHatke app is available on Windows and iOS stores.
Xiaomi has seen quite a lot of success in markets like Singapore, with handsets being sold out in a matter of few minutes. Its Redmi phone was out of stock in eight minutes during a limited-time sale on its e-commerce website, while all Mi3 phones were grabbed in just two minutes. But the Indian story is different.
On July 15, 2014, Xiaomi announced its foray into the Indian market with a range of flagship Mi smartphones and an exclusive partnership with e-commerce marketplace Flipkart for sale and delivery of these products across India. Mi3 went on sale on July 22. Flipkart was unable to manage the traffic on the day of the first sale and the servers crashed. The phone was out-of-stock within 40 minutes. The next three sales happened on July 29, August 5 and August 12 with the product going out of stock in five, two and 2.4 seconds respectively. Flipkart and Xiaomi will put up the Mi3 on sale tomorrow at 2PM IST. This week too, 20,000 units of the Mi3 will go on sale, exclusively on Flipkart.
The Chinese brand has faced a lot of criticism for its inability to cater to the soaring demand. The critics have raised questions such as why did the company allow up to one lakh registrations if it had just 10,000 units. Many users have conveniently opted for another phone after being frustrated due to the continuous out-of-stock drama. Some Twitter users who had registered for the sale said that the phone went out of stock even before they could even log in.
Xiaomi has teased the Indian buyers with an affordable budget feature-packed smartphone but is selling a limited number through a single online vendor, thereby creating an artificial shortage that may back-fire in a market like India. However, tomorrow is like a glimmer of hope for all those who have been waiting for months to lay their hands on the much-awaited Mi3. BuyHatke can make you lucky in a flash!