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Xiaomi's 'internet of things' arm pushes into Japan

Lumi United finds local partner to sell sensors for offices and shops

Lumi United's Japanese partner, Asteria, offers a system that sends an alert when an office coffee machine is empty, among other capabilities. (Courtesy of Asteria)

TOKYO -- Xiaomi, the Chinese smartphone maker known for budget handsets, has zeroed in on the "internet of things" as its next profit source and is moving aggressively to break into the Japanese market for smart management everything from coffee machines to convenience store lines.

Following its initial public offering in July, Xiaomi wants to expand the scope of its business. It is using an affiliate, Lumi United Technology, which recently announced it has partnered with Japan's software developer Asteria to sell sensors that control temperature, ventilation, lighting and other functions in offices, hotels and shops.

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