HTC isn’t having the best of time of late. Once the golden child of the Android space, HTC is now something of a bit-player playing second [more like third] fiddle to Samsung, Sony and LG.
And the worst part of all this is that HTC is producing some of the best hardware around – just look at the HTC One and HTC One Mini. The company recently posted its first quarterly loss as a public company, but there are plans afoot to turn all this around.
Speaking to the FT, HTC CEO Peter Chou and co-founder Cher Wong discussed the company’s fortunes of late, as well as their changing roles in the business. Going forwards, Wong will oversea the less glamorous side of the business [logistics, sales, customer service] while Chou will focus on product development.
“It’s a very exciting time right now because there are so many challenges – it is keeping us on tiptoes for the vision,” Wong said.
“The market is really big. HTC is a small company. For us to stay competitive and survive is not a huge problem.” Chou added that HTC stands a “good chance” of winning a 15% share in high-end smartphones and 5% of the global market overall and this would represent a “pretty good number for us”.
But the big news to come from the interview is that HTC is returning to the tablet space. Wong told the FT that HTC’s next tablet offering is indeed on the way and that once it does arrive it’ll be “nice and disruptive”.
HTC has previously been linked with a Windows RT slate, but dire sales in other areas of its business forced the company to shelve its Windows RT plans. The new tablet –– widely believed to be an Android offering –– will be the first tablet launched by HTC since the ill-fated HTC Flyer in 2011.
Wong offered no other details about the slate and refused to comment on when it would be landing. But the idea that it will be disruptive can only mean one thing: it’ll be heavily specced and aggressively priced, just like Google’s Nexus 7.
Chou also threw light on HTC’s potential foray into wearable tech, adding: “It has to meet a need, otherwise if it’s just a gimmick or concept, it’s not for people’s day-to-day lives. That is an opportunity for us,” Chou said of smartwatches.
“People laughed at us when we came out with the first smartphone… Now everyone has a smartphone. I’m pretty sure wearables will be the same, but don’t judge from what is in the market [now].”
We’ll update you with more as soon as we know more.