How To Understand Xiaomi’s Naming Scheme

How To Understand Xiaomi's Naming Scheme

The way Xiaomi names its phones is an absolute headscratcher for millions of people worldwide. So in this article, I want us to examine how to understand Xiaomi’s naming scheme.

Xiaomi makes a lot of phones that target different sections of the market. If you don’t understand how Xiaomi’s naming scheme works, there is a good chance that you’ll buy the one that is not meant for you. This is because I have seen people argue that the X or Y Redmi or Poco phone is slow or has a bad camera.

  • Me: what were you expecting buying an entry-level phone?
  • Person: Entry level phone? But they told me all Redmi phones were good.
  • Me: 🤦🏾‍♂️

How To Understand Xiaomi’s Naming Scheme

Generally speaking, the company has three main brands globally. I’m going to be ignoring the Chinese models now.

  1. Xiaomi
  2. Redmi
  3. Poco


Let’s start with the Xiaomi brand. Xiaomi is the company’s premium brand and that’s where you get the best phones.

It is split in 2:

  • Xiaomi
  • Xiaomi T


The Xiaomi line carries the flagships. These are the best phones that the company makes. As a result, they proudly carry the company’s name. Phones here include the Mi 11 Ultra, Xiaomi 12S Ultra, Xiaomi 13 Ultra, etc.

Xiaomi T

The Xiaomi T lineup carries what can be called Flagship Killers or budget flagships. These phones are impressive in their own right and boast some flagship capabilities. However, overall, they’re some way behind the actual flagships. Phones here include the Mi 10T Pro, Xiaomi 11T Pro, Xiaomi 12T Pro, and Xiaomi 13T Pro.

Poco and Redmi Sub-brands

The Poco and Redmi brands are essentially the same thing. Although Poco tends to focus on performance Redmi tries to be the all-rounder with some emphasis on camera.


Poco is mostly targeted at Southeast Asia, Eastern Europe, and Southern Africa. Unlike Redmi, it has maintained its stand on affordability whilst keeping its focus on pure performance.

The Poco brand is divided into several line ups such as:

  • Poco F – Flagship Killer
  • Poco X – Upper Midrange
  • Poco M – Lower midrange
  • Poco C – Budget/entry-level

This should help you understand how Poco phones are named.

If you see the Poco C50 or C55, you’ll know that it’s entry-level or budget, depending on the processor. The Poco C50 uses a Helio A22 so it’s entry-level. The Poco C55 uses a Helio G85 so it’s a budget phone.

Either way, both phones within the C family are low-end devices.

The Poco M5s is a lower Midrange phone, the Poco X4 Pro is an upper midrange phone. The Poco F5 is a flagship killer. Please keep these in mind.


Finally, we have the Redmi lineup. Redmi, just like Poco is a sub-brand of Xiaomi. Its initial focus was making quality phones affordable to all and sundry.

I don’t know if it’s our country’s economic climate or other factors, but Redmi has largely steered away from that here.

The Redmi brand has one of the most, if not the most confusing phone lineups in the world. However, I’m going to simplify it for you.

  • Redmi Note Pro – Upper Midrange
  • Redmi Note – Lower Midrange
  • Redmi and Redmi C – Budget
  • Redmi A – Entry level

As it is in typical Nigerian fashion, it is now that a lot of people have woken up to the Redmi brand. Years after the lustre has already begun to fade. Because of this Redmi hype, sellers are cashing in on a lot of people’s ignorance. All Redmi phones are not the same.

Redmi A series

If you see any Redmi phone with an A tag, and you’re not looking for a second phone, or something for a child or aging adult…brother, or sister, pull your shoes, pick it up, and run.

These include Redmi 7a, 8a, 9a, 10a, Redmi A, and Redmi A2+, avoid all of them.

Redmi and Redmi C series

Next up is the Redmi line. These phones usually just bear the name Redmi. For example, you have phones like Redmi 7, 8, 9, 10, 12. These are all budget phones. This means that you’ll get decent performance and okay cameras but nothing special. For the sake of convenience, all Redmi phones with the C tag also belong here. These include the Redmi 9c, 10c and 12c. These are all budget phones.

Redmi Note

Next up we have the Redmi Note series. This is where you start to see good performance, better than decent. You can also find good cameras and fast charging, side-mounted fingerprint scanners, AMOLED display, and so on. Here is also where you start to part with decent money, over 100k ($95). Examples of phones here include Redmi Note 10, Redmi Note 11, Redmi Note 12 etc.

Redmi Note Pro

Finally the Redmi Note Pro. These are the pinnacle of the Redmi brand and the very best of what it has to offer. When you hear all the good reviews about longevity, great performance, excellent cameras, sleek design, fast charging, etc. This is where it’s coming from.

The Redmi Note Pro includes the Redmi Note 8 Pro, my beloved Redmi Note 9 Pro, Redmi Note 10 Pro, Redmi Note 11 Pro, and the Redmi Note 12 Pro. The Redmi Note 12 Pro is Redmi Note 10 Pro in disguise.

There are other phones like the Redmi Note S and Redmi Note 5G. They belong to the Redmi Note Pro series so file them under this cabinet as well.


Now that we’ve cracked the Xiaomi naming code, I hope that you’ll make more informed choices when picking your next smartphone. No more surprises—just the right device for your needs.

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