Xiaomi is blocking cell phones exported to certain countries

Xiaomi is performing automatic device blocking in Cuba, Iran, Syria, North Korea, Sudan and Crimea. The action complies with the Chinese manufacturer’s export policy, which prohibits the sale of products in these territories.

For a few months, users in these regions have been reporting the issue on technology forums and on the Reddit. However, the wave of blockades has intensified in recent weeks.

Message seen by users with blocked cell phones.Message seen by users with blocked cell phones.Source: Reddit/Reproduction

According to reports, users lose access to cell phones after a few days of use. The device then displays the following message: “Xiaomi policy does not allow the sale or supply of the product in the territory where you activated it”.

Apparently, the problem only affects devices activated in regions where there is a ban on the sale of products. Meanwhile, models activated in the countries of origin of the sale continue to function normally.

Interestingly, the lock doesn’t affect customers who have installed custom ROMs on Xiaomi smartphones. For now, it is not clear why these devices are kept in use.

Xiaomi's terms do not mention blocking in countries whose export is prohibited.Xiaomi’s terms do not mention blocking in countries whose export is prohibited.Source: Christian Salas/Unsplash/Reproduction

Xiaomi Terms and Conditions

Xiaomi’s terms and conditions document clearly states that it prohibits buyers from exporting products to selected regions. However, the brand does not specify that it will be able to block phones in those countries.

“Buyer will not export any product purchased from seller to any country, territory or anywhere if export control laws prohibit it. The banned countries include Cuba, Iran, Syria, North Korea, Sudan and Crimea,” according to the text.

Although the brand does not reveal the reasons for the ban, all the countries mentioned have diplomatic problems with the United States. Furthermore, the document highlights that the products sold are subject to US export control laws.

With that in mind, Brazilian users who have exported branded cell phones need not worry, especially with the current expansion of the brand in the country. Still, it’s interesting to note that the company has the power to automatically block smartphones in certain regions of the world.

Image: Xiaomi Redmi Note 9T