Rumoured to be building smartphone line for Amazon
Financially, HTC is in dire straits as the once-mighty manufacturer is fighting to stay relevant in a market in which Samsung has become the runaway leader, writes our Indian correspondent – Asif Shaik. HTC, on the other hand, is having a disastrous year even after launching the HTC One, which critics agree to be the best smartphone of the year, thanks to excellent all-round performance and design. Samsung still managed to sell over 40 million units of Galaxy S4 due to better marketing, supply-chain and pricing strategy while HTC was still stuck with manufacturing and assembly issues.
It looks like HTC has learnt nothing from earlier mistakes, as its latest offering, the HTC One Max, has been launched a month after Samsung’s Galaxy Note III became available.
Another concerning trend is that HTC mobile prices have not been in line with what Samsung offers. See Indian prices on the MySmartPrice web site here.
Samsung is known to offer attractive financing schemes, while HTC has had price increases for its devices in the last few months.
Furthermore, HTC cannot come close to might of Samsung’s marketing and advertising division.
However, this is an area that the Taiwanese manufacturer has looked to fix by recruiting the likes of Robert Downey Jr.
However, it looks like the move is not making any significant difference to HTC’s bottomline.
The organisation saw many of its high-level management head out the door this year.
Amidst this, HTC suffered its first quarterly loss in Q2 2013, after which many industry analysts (including GoMo News) predicted that it would admit defeat and look for a buyer.
This year has already seen stalwarts like Nokia and BlackBerry look like being acquired. Peter Chou, the passionate leader HTC, has mentioned that the brand has to do something different to maintain its position.
HTC’s chairwoman, Cher Wang, has mentioned that a buyout is not on the cards anytime soon, and that the manufacturer will continue to persevere in the face of calamity.
However, the going will certainly get tougher in the short-term, as it was announced recently that current CEO Peter Chou is relinquishing a few duties back to HTCs chairwoman as he looks to be more involved in the manufacturer’s product portfolio and innovation.
For now, HTC is looking to mitigate further setbacks by undertaking a new strategy, one in which it redoubles its efforts in emerging markets like China and India.
These are counties in which HTC has enjoyed a pinch of success so far.
As such, it has launched three additional devices in their mid-range priced Desire series, which includes the Desire 709D, Desire 7060 and Desire 7088 in China.
These devices feature a 5-inch qHD screen, 1.2 GHz quad-core Snapdragon 200 CPU, 1 GB RAM, 8 GB internal memory, 8-megapixel camera at the back, 2.1-megapixel front shooter and a 2,100 mAh battery.
The devices differ in their design, and are targeted toward a younger audience. HTC understands market scenarios in China well, and has included dual-SIM functionality as well as micro-SD card slots in these devices.
The HTC One Max, was unveiled in China, which signifies a shift in focus for the manufacturer.
Instead of battling it out on a global stage against the likes of Samsung, HTC is sticking to countries where it has a faithful user base, which adds to more revenues.
Also, it has been rumoured earlier this week that Amazon is looking to build a smartphone line, and is collaborating with HTC to build these devices.
That should come as a welcome sign for HTC, which began its life as a contract device manufacture for the likes of Sony and network carriers around the world.
However, time is running out fast. The manufacturer is losing market share, consumers and high-level executives. If it needs to regain lost ground, it needs to do so fast.