HTC Promises Launch Of “Hero Product” In October
At HTC’s annual general meeting, HTC CEO and Chairwoman Cher Wang apologized to the company shareholders for HTC’s recent performance, as reported by Taipei Times. This apology comes a few days after HTC’s stock price dropped to a 12-year low of NT$98, while HTC’s highest was at April 1st 2011 at NT$1,300. The recent dismal performance was blamed on poor operational efficiency and overly conservative marketing strategy in the global market.
While we are not privy to the exact numbers which indicate “poor operational efficiency”, dwindling profits on the other hand should come as no surprise to anyone who hasn’t been living under a rock since the launch of HTC One M9.
Launched amidst direct competition from a redesigned Galaxy S6, the One M9 felt like a deja-vu product. That by itself is not a bad thing, but critics were quick to point out that the One M9 brought nothing new to the table whilst ignoring some major qualms against the previous iteration of HTC’s flagship, the One M8. To add salt to wounds, the One M9 was also at the heart of the one of biggest controversies of 2015, thanks to the heating issues caused by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 810, which further aggravated shipment delays after launch . In view of disheartening sales, HTC also had to resort to cutting its component orders for the One M9 by 30%.
All of this together paints a rather poor picture, one of a company in distress. But in order to retain shareholder confidence, HTC’s CEO Cher Wang did promise a turnaround for the company in the second half of 2015. Wang revealed that the company plans to improve upon its core business segment of smartphones. This starts with the launch of a “Hero Product” in October and continues on with “significant improvements” in innovation and design for the next years flagship model.
Along with new releases, HTC will also aim to enhance its existing business models by improving the product mix strategy for smartphones, which could mean a greater choice on a wider price range. There will also be reduction in production costs thanks to improvements in production efficiency and optimizations of components supply chain.
Another notable announcement comes in the form of improvements in marketing strategies. HTC will not renew its contract with Robert Downey Jr after this year. On the face of it, this looks like good decision-making but it would have made more sense to discontinue contracts with the teams responsible for advertisements featuring twerking green trolls and antidepressant medication rather than the actor.
All in all, the first half of 2015 has been nothing short of a nightmare for HTC. But the management is positive that the company can come full circle and make up lost ground in the second half of 2015.
Even at the smartphone front, HTC is trying to tap again into India’s low budget sub-10k market, with the recent launch of the HTC Desire 326G. This product launch comes in close timing with the launch of a few China Specific models in its HTC One lineup. There is also the imminent public launch of the HTC Vive, HTC’s take on virtual reality, to look forward to.
We hope HTC does indeed work upon its past mistakes and improve upon its current form. The brand “HTC” remains one of the most influential in XDA’s history, and we hope they make a comeback comparable to the Galaxy S6.
What do you think of HTC’s latest game plan? Is it enough to survive in such a fiercely competitive market? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!
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