Uh-Oh: HTC Profits Projected to Fall 17%, Company To Focus on China
Remember HTC, the company that makes mobile phones that run Android and Windows Phone? If you’ve forgotten about them, you’re not alone– the company announced today that revenue for the first quarter of 2013 could fall 17 percent from the previous quarter. That fall would shrink the company to almost the same size it was in 2010, which is when HTC just started making its ascension as the phone maker de jour with popular phones like the Evo 4G, the Droid Incredible and the myTouch 4G.
Since then, Samsung has come on strong and now boasts several flagship Android phones like Galaxy S III and the Galaxy Note II. Of course, competition from Apple, which just became the largest phone manufacturer in the U.S., hasn’t helped HTC’s case either, nor has LG’s recent rise in popularity.
What’s a mobile phone maker to do in trying times? Focus on emerging markets! HTC’s CFO, Chang Chia-Lin, told investors the company plans on launching more low cost phones in China. Currently their least expensive device in China costs 1,999 yuan ($320 U.S.), but HTC plans on making and marketing phones that will cost almost half of that. HTC is also looking at other emerging markets beyond China; it just launched its first phone in Myanmar last month.
Though HTC may be downshifting to lower cost handsets, it doesn’t mean it has given up playing with the big boys completely. There’s a press conference on February 19th in New York and London to announce the M7, HTC’s new flagship Android phone. Though nothing’s been confirmed, it’s suspected to run Android 4.1 Jellybean with HTC Sense 5.0. Other possible specs include a 13 megapixel camera, a 1.7 GHx quad-core Qualcomm processor, 2GB of RAM and a generous 32GB of onboard storage.