Remember when the HTC Touch Diamond 2 and Touch Pro 2 were the talk of the smartphone world back in 2009? Or when every one fell for the dual camera setup and design of the HTC One (M8)? The company has not been relevant since that latter model was released in 2014. Since then, HTC has been overflowing with red ink, and if not for the $1.1 billion it received from Google for its Pixel engineering team earlier this year, who knows if the company would still have a pulse? As it is, HTC announced earlier this month that it is letting a quarter of its remaining global workforce go.
HTC U12+ flagship from its competition, HTC appears to be stuck again. What can the manufacturer do? Announce exclusive support for CryptoKitties, of course. These are virtual, digital cats that are collectable and breedable. Each cat is unique and one-of-a-kind. And did we mention that these cryptocollectables rely on Ethereum's blockchain technology for secure buying, selling and trading of CryptoKitties?With nothing special to distinguish the recently released
The value of your CryptoKitties could rise along with cryptocurrencies. Earlier this year, a particular digital cat was sold for $150,000. The median price for a virtual cat as of last December was $25,000. Prices have crashed since. Still, over $7 million has been spent on CryptoKitties overall.
HTC hasn't made it clear yet how this will work. It is expected to release a blockchain based phone called Exodus later this year, so the CryptoKitties feature seems to dovetail perfectly with that new phone. According to the CryptoKitties website, a digital wallet is necessary to collect the virtual cats, so we would expect HTC to offer this on the HTC U12+ and the other models it plans on offering the cryptocollectables on. You will also need a computer running Firefox or Chrome, and digital currency Ethereum.
While interesting, if this is HTC's plan to make the U12+ relevant, co-founder and CEO Cher Wang might want to make sure that the company has plenty of red ink left for its future earnings reports.