Xiaomi

Xiaomi CEO Lei Jun said Tuesday that the company has 600 engineers working on AI efforts and is planning to include significant AI features in its next flagship phone, the Mi 7.

As for the two biggest questions - when will Xiaomi go public and when will it start selling phones in the U.S., Lei Jun offered few details.

Why it matters: After raising a ton of private money, investors have been eagerly watching when Xiaomi might go public. Similarly, the company is perennially being asked when it might bring its smartphones might come to the U.S.

He declined to comment at all on IPO plans. As for when Xiaomi might enter the U.S., he said the company is still "carefully evaluating the best timeline to come to the U.S. market."

"We hope to be an immediate success in the US so we need a lot of time and careful preparation to ensure that," he said, answering reporter questions at a Qualcomm event in Maui.

On the AI front: Lei Jun noted Xiaomi has already started selling an AI-powered smart speaker in China and Jun said it is "very popular and selling well"

The big picture: After a big dip in 2016, Xiaomi has returned to growth and has been expanding into new international markets, including a number of Western markets. Jun noted that Xiaomi is now a top player in India as well as the No. 1 smartphone maker in Belarus and No. 2 in Russia.

Go deeper

Deadly Hurricane Zeta slams U.S. Gulf Coast

A satellite image of Hurricane Zeta. Photo: National Hurricane Center/NOAA

Hurricane Zeta has killed at least one person after a 55-year-old man was "electrocuted by a downed power line" in Louisiana as the storm caused widespread power outages Wednesday night, per AP.

What's happening: Zeta made landfall south of New Orleans as a Category 2 hurricane earlier Wednesday before weakening to Category 1. But it was still "battering southeastern Louisiana and southern Mississippi with life-threatening storm surge, high winds, and heavy rain" late Wednesday, per the National Hurricane Center.

Updated 44 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Politics: Biden ahead in Wisconsin, Michigan as cases surge in the Midwest.
  2. Health: Fauci says U.S. may not return to normal until 2022 — Trump's testing czar: Surge "is real" and not just caused by more tests Some coronavirus survivors have "autoantibodies."
  3. Business: Consumer confidence sinking Testing is a windfall.
  4. World: Europe faces "stronger and deadlier" wave France imposes lockdown Germany to close bars and restaurants for a month.
  5. Sports: Boston Marathon delayed MLB to investigate Dodgers player who joined celebration after positive COVID test.
1 hour ago - Health

Fauci says U.S. may not return to normal until 2022

Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Anthony Fauci, testifies during a September Senate hearing on COVID-19 in Washington, D.C. Photo: Graeme Jennings/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

NIAID director Anthony Fauci told the Journal of the American Medical Association on Wednesday he doesn't expect a COVID-19 vaccine to be ready until January 2021 or later.

What he's saying: Fauci said during the interview that the U.S. was in a "bad position" after failing to keep case numbers down post-summer. "We should have been way down in baseline and daily cases and we’re not," he said.