While Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Samsung (NASDAQOTH:SSNLF) remain the top dogs in the global smartphone market, the crown in the exploding Chinese smartphone market now goes to another player: local vendor Xiaomi. Founded in 2010, Xiaomi has risen to the top of the Chinese market with breathtaking speed.

Kantar Worldpanel Comtech now estimates that Xiaomi grabbed 22% of the market in December, topping Samsung's 19% share. Xiaomi comprised 25% of all new connected device sales on China Mobile during the month, the largest wireless carrier in the country. As Apple prepares to launch the iPhone on China Mobile this Friday, it will be going up against Xiaomi's latest and greatest. However, judging by Apple's competition with Amazon.com in the tablet market, the iPhone may still be able to hold its own on the high end while Xiaomi plays in the low end.

In this segment of Tech Teardown, Erin Kennedy discusses Xiaomi's meteoric rise with Evan Niu, CFA, our tech and telecom bureau chief.

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Erin Kennedy owns shares of Apple. Evan Niu, CFA owns shares of Apple. The Motley Fool recommends Amazon.com and Apple. The Motley Fool owns shares of Amazon.com, Apple, and China Mobile. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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