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Has HTC Taken a Back Seat on the Innovation Car?

Has HTC Taken a Back Seat on the Innovation Car?

If you take a look at the thumbnail pic that I posted in this article, it reads “HTC – quietly brilliant”. This company that we (xda-developers) have followed from many years was always the pinnacle of advancement in the world of pda-phone devices. Revolutionary concepts always graced HTC’s line up of devices with things that most other companies would simply just stare at in an attempt to try and realize where they get their ideas from. The concepts such as the Blue Angel, with the vertical slide-out keyboard, officially kissing the attachable thumb keyboard good bye. Also, the smaller concept pdas like the Magician, and who can forget the very unique HTC Universal with its clamshell device design? If you take a look at 2007 (introduction of the Apple iPhone), HTC has considered this to be a major threat to their business model and as such, has been focusing their efforts in trying to tackle Apple’s design, and to a certain extent (and after many years), they somewhat succeeded in their attempt. HTC gave birth to Sense, partnered with Google to give rise to Android phones, made bigger and thinner devices with more power, and added much smoother functionality than their predecessors. So, congratulations to HTC! The Apple menace has been contained….

(rumbling in coming from behind and the sides) What is that noise? Are those Motorola, Samsung, LG, and their grandmothers about to trample all over us?  Argghh….

Aside from the obvious over exaggeration in the last bit, after this last CES we saw that this is not far from being the case. Point and case, a lot of speculation had gone in 2010 about HTC being the first to roll out things like dual core processor devices. Needless to say, this did not happen as both Motorola and LG beat them to the punch in this field (the HTC Pyramid was announced too late to be a shocker). Same can be said for Tablets, new screens, and much, much more. It is always good to see some healthy competition, but I believe that because of trying to fend off Apple, HTC forgot that they are not alone in the world of mobile electronics and gave the competition enough chance to catch up. Think about it, HTC’s highlights of CES were more devices of the Desire family. These are fantastic devices, don’t get me wrong, but aside from a few tweaks, updated packages, and a few extra sprinkles here and there, it is the same device repackaged. For instance, the Inspire 4G is just a Desire HD with HSPA+ capabilities added, nothing more.

You will probably wonder now, well, what do you consider being innovative then? Being beaten to a technology that you have been working on is bad enough, but if you want a true idea of what innovation actually entails, please go ahead and Google “Kyocera Echo”. If you have ever wondered what would come out of the fusion between a Nintendo DS and an Android device, look no further. This further proves the point as now even Kyocera has come up with something far more original than what HTC has been doing for the last couple of years.

What are your thoughts on the Mobile Phone wars? Do you think that HTC will remain as one of the top innovators in the years to come? Please share your thoughts with us by commenting below.

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