Chinese handset manufacturer Xiaomi is learning fast in Singapore. Earlier, after receiving flak for not disclosing the exact number of smartphones sold, it said that it will be selling 5,000 sets of Redmi smartphones priced at S$169 (US$133) today.

While all 5,000 sets were sold out in a 4 minutes and 42 seconds, the firm still managed to land itself into deep trouble. Customers were complaining that they have been double-charged. Xiaomi, however, was quick to respond online. It used a Facebook status as a thread for complaints with the hashtag “#PayPal27Mar”.


Was the whole saga PayPal‘s fault? In a quick update, Xiaomi wrote on Facebook:

Update on #PayPal27Mar issue – Dear Mi Fans, we want to clarify some of the issues that our customers encountered during today’s (27 March) Redmi sale.

1. At 12.00 p.m. today, Redmi went on sale. We received multiple customer feedback that payment was made successfully through PayPal, yet the successful payment was not reflected on order status. The Pay option was still available after payment.
2. Today, PayPal’s payment gateway experienced technical difficulties and was not able to pass the right information to us to confirm payment, resulting in our website not being able to indicate the right status. This is a global PayPal payment issue, and affects more than Xiaomi’s e-commerce transactions.
3. Some customers have indicated that they have made multiple payments.

Here are some next steps of action that Xiaomi will follow up on:

1. All affected transactions orders are being looked into by Xiaomi and PayPal.
2. Please do not make additional payment under your Orders.
3. If you believe you have been charged multiple times, please PM us and provide your order reference number, and the email confirmation receipt from PayPal (with #PayPal27Mar).
4. Our customer service hotline, emails, and Facebook communication channels are experiencing heavy loads currently, hence response might be delayed. If you have already messaged us (through comments, wall post, PM), please allow some time for us to address your concerns.

We thank you for your understanding, and will provide another update on the payment status soon. (Sic)

One customer, who would rather go unnamed, also told this author that he had tried calling Xiaomi on its support hotlines, which were seemingly unmanned. He added, “(I called them for) 30 minutes. No one picked up.” There was also no response when he had tried emailing them.

e27 has reached out to PayPal for comments. Watch this space.