You’re a wizard: Redmi teams up with Harry Potter for second collab

On 10 April, commuters at Peking University East Gate subway station in Beijing found themselves on Platform 9¾ at Kings Cross train station, with a trolley stuck halfway in a pillar. It was Redmi, a budget-friendly sub-brand by smartphone maker Xiaomi that brought the magic to the underground station near the higher education institution. The installation will be accessible between now and 22 April.

It has been just over a year since Redmi’s first collaboration with the classic children’s literature and film Harry Potter. This time, apart from the takeover of the subway station, Redmi announced a Harry Potter edition of its soon-to-be-released Turbo 3 smartphone, and will be fully decked out with Harry Potter motifs from the Golden Snitch Quidditch ball to the legendary Death Hallows. The co-branded collection also includes phone protectors and a tablet.

On Weibo, China’s Twitter-like platform, the topic “I woke up and found myself in Hogwarts” (#一觉醒来被拉到了霍格沃茨#) reached number 34 on the Hot Search list with 9.49 million views.  Netizens are attracted to the subway station due to its opportunities for a “check-in” (打卡). Influencers posted photos with the yet to be released Turbo 3 smartphone at the station, teasing the collaboration.

Outside the subway station, Xiaomi brought pop-ups to its 150 directly operated Mi Stores. Between 13-21 April, visitors who participate in the Harry Potter events will have a chance to win exclusive merch including a phone stand, postcards and stickers. Xiaomi also brought the party to its headquarters in Beijing, with music from the film series, as well as giant statues based on the wizard’s chess set. Hebei Academy of Fine Arts in Shijiazhuang in the neighbouring Hebei province will welcome a themed event. This is because the college is known for its Hogwarts-like gothic castle on its campus.

Redmi has been targeting younger audiences with its collaborations. This collaboration is thorough from online to offline, with events and products. Pundits find the collaboration “sincere” while hailing it as one of its “deepest collaborations” as it has brought new and innovative ways of co-branding to a familiar IP. After the first collaboration, it is natural for fans to hold higher expectations for a second team-up between the smartphone label and the IP. It seems Xiaomi, through Redmi, has delivered the resonance fans are looking for.


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