HTC Is Making a Comeback to the Smartphone Business

Is it too late?

HTC Desire 10 Pro

HTC Desire 10 ProHTC has had a not so great 2018, or 2017 or 2016 or any other year since 2011 when they still had a significant stake in the global smartphone business(11% global sales then vs now gets “others” in market reports). But things are looking good for the company as it plans to make a comeback.

The Taiwanese company recently had a CEO change from Cher Wang who steeped down and got filled up by Yves Maitres, former Orange executive.

The new CEO was at this years TechCrunch Disrupt where he got to share about the hardware firm’s struggles and future.

He got pretty candid saying HTC stopped innovating in the hardware of the smartphone and that people like Apple, like Samsung and, most recently, Huawei, have done an incredible job investing in their hardware. He continues to say that his company didn’t as they had been focussing on virtual reality.

“When I was young, somebody told me, ‘to be right at the wrong time is to be wrong and to be wrong at the right time is right.’ I think we’ve been right at the wrong time and now we have to catch up. We made a timing mistake. It is very difficult to anticipate the time. HTC made a mistake in terms of timing. It is a difficult mistake and we are paying for that, but we still have so many assets in terms of innovation, team and balance sheets that I feel we are recovering from the timing mistake,” he tells the audience.

HTC has been focusing much of its R&D money on Extended Reality(XR – an umbrella term used for VR, AR, and MR) but more on VR  via its Vive line. Yves Maitres hopes that their XR offerings will overtake the mobile side in five years depending on customer adoption.

Countries with higher GDP

Yves said HTC is also going back to the smartphone business. However, they only focus on premium smartphones but not targeted at developing nations. The company’s play will be on “countries with higher GDP.”

Here’s what to expect about the new HTC devices

Yves goes on to say, “The competition is changing. We’re all having a situation where worldwide market share is going down and the customer is disappointed in not being to have the latest Huawei phone anymore. How to give our customers the ability to come back to what they wish, in terms of best in class hardware and photography that HTC to will to solve in the next few months.”

On 5G

Yves Maitres adds that 5G will be the primary bottleneck to growth on the company’s mobile side. He says that it will depend on the way carriers deploy 5G and that they are dependent on the speed carriers will deploy this tech.

Do you think it’s too late?