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HTC chief executive: “The worst has probably passed”

Posted: , by Victor H.

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HTC chief executive: “The worst has probably passed”
After enjoying a moment in the spotlight as the Android success story in 2010 and early 2011, shares of HTC have plummeted to a six-year low, down 80% from the 2010 peak, but according to the company’s chief executive Peter Chou the worst time is over and the company is looking to a brighter 2013.

The worst for HTC has probably passed. 2013 will not be too bad. Our competitors were too strong and very resourceful, pouring in lots of money into marketing. We haven’t done enough on the marketing front. Although we don’t have as much money to counter [Samsung and Apple], the most important thing is to have unique products that appeal to consumers,” Chou said.

HTC has not yet unveiled new products, but is expected to overhaul its lineup at either CES or MWC. Next Monday, HTC will release its preliminary fourth quarter results and at the end of the month it will announce final results and guidance for the forthcoming quarters.

HTC is making some important advances in key markets. It has focused on China, a move that brought it bigger sales in the biggest phone market in the world. In Q3, HTC sold 2.8 million smartphones in China, more than Apple sold iPhones there.

Additionally, the company is trying to bring life to its marketing department, and the ended dispute with Apple over patents is also a positive thing.

"One thing I'd learned from last year is to act fast and be responsive to market changes," Mr. Chou added. "We are being more flexible now. We are constantly fine-tuning our sales plans and position in various markets."

Let’s see how this works out in 2013.

source: Wall Street Journal

35 Comments
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posted on 04 Jan 2013, 05:41 1

1. rusticguy (Posts: 2826; Member since: 11 Aug 2012)


If apple makes less profit then worst is yet to come for HTC et al :)

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 05:50

3. MeoCao (unregistered)


can u clarify?

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 06:02 1

6. rusticguy (Posts: 2826; Member since: 11 Aug 2012)


If they make less money by selling devices they will try and cover it up by suing -- their another main business -- which means troubles and more troubles.

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 06:42 2

9. MeoCao (unregistered)


lol, this is why HTC thinks they will do better than other Android OEMs, HTC has become a little brother of Apple and will not be sued.

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 07:22 2

14. Aeires (unregistered)


True, but I wonder if that'll last if HTC suddenly pulls a Samsung and blows past Apple in phones sold. Granted, that's an astronomically huge 'if' to pull off.

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 07:38

16. MeoCao (unregistered)


HTC must have something really big then, and they fear no1 once they reach that position.

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 12:46

28. gwuhua1984 (Posts: 1237; Member since: 06 Mar 2012)


I think HTC should be safe from any Apple threats for another 5 years. How long was that agreement for again?

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 07:18

13. darkkjedii (Posts: 10354; Member since: 05 Feb 2011)


Man U can't go more than 5 minutes without mentioning apple can u? I notice I hardly see u on the android articles, just the apple ones. R u sure u dislike apple as much as u say u do?

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 05:49 9

2. MeoCao (unregistered)


Looks like Butterfly/DNA, One X+ are doing well

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 10:40

24. Lboogey6 (Posts: 264; Member since: 31 Jan 2012)


how so? if they are doing a complete overhaul they are showing the products are pushing as well as they would've hoped. To be honest this whole contract with one carrier thing isn't helping them succeed. I would love for HTC to be a power house again but they have to be smart spread the word market like no other and stop one carrier selling.

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 12:47

29. gwuhua1984 (Posts: 1237; Member since: 06 Mar 2012)


I think the one device that's really doing well at this moment is the Butterfly. Not sure how the DNA is selling in the States, but Butterfly is selling like hot cakes in Japanese and Taiwan with Taiwan sold out everywhere.

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 05:53 9

4. vladd100 (Posts: 56; Member since: 12 Jul 2012)


keyword: marketing ,marketing, marketing.......wakeup!!

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 06:59 4

10. tiara6918 (Posts: 1344; Member since: 26 Apr 2012)


Htc made the right decision of changing their chief marketing officer and this year will be a great start for the company. Marketing was what they really lack in order to sell more handsets

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 07:25 8

15. Aeires (unregistered)


Keyword: carriers, carriers, carriers!

They need their high end phones to stop being exclusive to only certain carriers and offer them to everyone. Samsung killed it with the S3, making it available all over the world on a massive amount of carriers. HTC should have taken notes on that.

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 08:53 3

18. SellPhones82 (Posts: 488; Member since: 11 Dec 2008)


No, they need to quit locking their phones down! If I wanted a locked down phone I'd go with a iPhone. Most people get an Android device because they are "open" and they can flash other roms and kernels. Are there even any HTC phones released in the last year that you can get S-Off now? I thought about getting the EVO LTE but went with the GSIII after reading all the S-Off horror stories and that turns devs away from the device as well so there is little to nothing you can do to them. HTC lost many customers to Samsung because of this and I think it will continue unless they become more "dev friendly" like Samsung has done.

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 09:14 2

19. Aeires (unregistered)


Most people don't buy phones for that reason. There's no way you'll ever prove that the mod community is larger than the average Joe who walks into a store and buys phones. The mod community is good sized, but tiny in comparison to the overall phones sold.

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 10:00 1

21. z31k_3 (Posts: 14; Member since: 06 May 2011)


Maybe true, but we will have a huge impact on the others around us that will take our opinion over the majority. How many times have you asked someone who knows more about a subject, and just took their word for it just because they seem to know what they were talking about?? etc. most iphone owners....

I, for one agree. They really need to quit locking down and they need to quit with the intergrated battery..

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 10:32 1

23. Aeires (unregistered)


While I agree with you completely, that's still not enough to influence HTC's decisions.

This is my personal opinion but I believe it comes down to market strategy. HTC's strategy is to sell quality phones and focus on the average consumer, hence all the things that drive the modding community nuts. Samsung's strategy is to sell as many phones as possible and not care so much about them because after one is released, they've already moved on to their next iteration. I believe HTC looks at their customers as one who holds onto their phones longer than a Samsung customer will. Regardless how many times it's posted, if you mod your phone you void the warranty. HTC doesn't want to deal with that so they make it more difficult for the modding crowd while focusing on the mainstream consumer. Samsung doesn't care, they just want to sell volume (with quality, just not as much as it could be if they slowed down).

My two cents on the differences.

posted on 05 Jan 2013, 23:43

35. ftyler223 (Posts: 140; Member since: 06 Aug 2012)


Aeires. That is a very clever way of explaining the whole HTC Samsung sales comparison. Its true. HTC makes a much better quality phone than Samsung. I couldn't agree with you more.

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 10:44

25. Lboogey6 (Posts: 264; Member since: 31 Jan 2012)


its not the mod community people are already brainwashd to think only one brand of phone works (he who will not be named) lol so they are making sure that if they stick with or go to android they get the best of the best so if you hear numerous horror stories which do happen very often with htc they won't buy not to mention honest sales people will push away from it knowing it doesn't perform well for the same amount of money and two years on a contract. looking at the EVO line up kudos to releasin the first but everyone of those has had a pile of issues they have gotten better yes but i try not to count 3d version...ouch

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 13:47

31. SellPhones82 (Posts: 488; Member since: 11 Dec 2008)


Yes, the average Joe's outnumber the mod community by at least 5 to 1 but in the end it's still market share that HTC is giving up to Samsung and other OEMs. HTC also seems to be slower at getting updates out. Maybe it's because they do have too many phones out on different carriers and need to focus more on one main flagship phone and then a few mid to lower range phones. I thought that was something they mentioned last year yet the One X hit only AT&T, Sprint got an “EVO” version of it, T-Mo gets the X+, VZW didn’t get one at all and then launches the DNA which trumps the other three. The GS2 will get Jelly Bean...how many HTC phones release in 2011 year will see JB? The Design and 3D will not. The Shift and OG EVO never broke 2.3.4. Like others have mentioned, word of mouth and others experiences with a phone or OEM are key, I think as much or more than any ad campaign in some cases. A buddy of mines 3D was jacked for some reason after a recent OTA update and kept rebooting into the factory recovery for some unknow reason. He’d taken it to Sprint and they “tried” to fix it but were unsuccessful. It’d be an easy fix if his phone was rooted and had a custom recovery since I could then wipe /system and caches and make the phone run better that a stock 3D after we remove a ton of that bloat that only makes the phone run slower and use additional resources. Needless to say he’s now looking forward to his upgrade date so he can get a GS4.

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 05:54 5

5. Mozarrt (Posts: 295; Member since: 08 Oct 2011)


Hope the new Windows Phones are also adding to a possible succes and profit next year.

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 06:27 4

7. preet27in (banned) (Posts: 173; Member since: 07 Jul 2012)


htc u r really the best phone makers. look at their build quality and looks. they just beat any phone out there.and offcorse ur sense software is unique. all htc need is a big big marketing skills and moreover, even better camers with best music. no doubt one x and upper models have ver good camers but still they need improvements, in terms of zooming capabilities like nokia has. (808 pureview and lumia 920). and more improvement in music quality. i bet if they improve only a few of these things. HELL YA NO PHONE IS GNA BEAT THEM. UR THE BEST HTC. GOOD LUCK FOR FUTURE

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 10:46 1

26. Lboogey6 (Posts: 264; Member since: 31 Jan 2012)


lol wait did you mention best phone makers and then speak about just a few 0f the flaws they have come on marketing only does so much look at how much you see from windows marketing (no offense to wp owners) but thats still a slowly moving ship people wake up past phones fail after months and then current phone people are hesitant.

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 06:34 4

8. Berzerk000 (Posts: 3939; Member since: 26 Jun 2011)


Marketing + flagship across all carriers = success. You already make quality products, HTC, you just need to make them known and more available. No one is going to switch carriers for your devices HTC, they're good, but not that good.

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 07:04 2

11. amiroo (Posts: 269; Member since: 03 Sep 2012)


i think the people must take reality .. HTC always produce most powerful & best quality and design & best support among the others.. but it isnt enough for their success.. their market is weak..
i belive that they return to peak of sells if they want & expand their adv.

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 07:15

12. cripton805 (Posts: 907; Member since: 18 Mar 2012)


They need to modify sense and make it more customizable and add features. I like HTC quality. My old Droid Incredible was a great phone and a great flagship for its time.

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 08:20 4

17. parkwaydr (Posts: 572; Member since: 07 Sep 2011)


HTC makes good phones. They just always seem to find a way to gimp them and never have a complete package. Either by leaving something out or a stupid exclusive carrier deal. The one x + should have been on more than just att. And the DNA should have been released on more than just Verizon. They need to stop keeping out things like SD cards. And start feeling quality products on multiple carriers. This is why Samsung scored huge with the gs111 it was a quality release sold through multiple channels.

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 10:47 1

27. Lboogey6 (Posts: 264; Member since: 31 Jan 2012)


.....i love this thank you.

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 09:22 4

20. InspectorGadget80 (Posts: 6215; Member since: 26 Mar 2011)


I blame APPLE for BANNING HTC DEVICES earlier this year and making them loosing more money for each hand set sold goes into their greedy pockets

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 10:22 2

22. BREvenson (Posts: 204; Member since: 17 May 2012)


If I were Peter Chou, I'd be a little more confident about HTC's current situation and future in mobile technology. I would say that given HTC's latest lineup (pretty damn good phones overall) and steadily expanding influence on the market today, I'd say the worst HAS passed. None of this "probably" stuff, that doesn't make you sound very sure about what you and your company are doing with themselves.

As an HTC phone owner, I am happy with HTC's quality of products and I am confident that they will continue to regain some of that lost market share. I do agree their issues with carrier exclusivity are hurting them in the long run, but hopefully HTC can either use that to their benefit (somehow) or start putting certain models on multiple carriers; an easy way to expand revenue and popularity. Either way, they can work it out this year, all it takes is some good business decisions and some good phones.

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 12:48

30. gwuhua1984 (Posts: 1237; Member since: 06 Mar 2012)


I hope the worst has passed for them. Really looking forward to M7, if M7 is carrier locked again, then HTC will deserve to fall. Don't make the same mistakes HTC.

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 14:03

32. kirholstov (Posts: 135; Member since: 28 Jun 2012)


All my phones are htc

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 15:49

33. XPERIA-KNIGHT (Posts: 2384; Member since: 08 Aug 2012)


Sony and HTC's YEAR! no strings ATTACHED!

posted on 04 Jan 2013, 19:31

34. opensourceftw (banned) (Posts: 148; Member since: 01 Jan 2013)


"Additionally, the company is trying to bring life to its marketing department, and the ended dispute with Apple over patents is also a positive thing"

Debatable. They did the equivalant of just handing the bully their lunch money every day with a big smile and a "thank you" instead of fighting for it.

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