Between its layoffs, legal woes and operating losses, there’s no question that HTC had a bumpy 2013. The company is aware of it, too, and has planned out exactly how to bounce back in 2014. We already know that HTC plans to refocus on its marketing and introduce a wearable device, but what about smartphones? Don’t worry, the Taiwanese firm’s got that area covered, too.
Speaking to Reuters, HTC Chairwoman Cher Wang said that her company intends to expand its lineup of $150 to $300 mid-range phones in 2014. Wang explained that in 2013, HTC focused entirely on its flagship products like the One, and so it ended up missing out on “a huge chunk of the mid-tier market.”
That doesn’t mean that HTC will be abandoning the high-end completely. Wang and HTC CFO Chialin Chang confirmed that a follow-up to 2013′s One is in the works and that invitations to its debut event will be sent out in approximately two weeks. No details about the device were shared by the executives, but the rumor mill has suggested that the device is codenamed “M8” and that it features a 5-inch 1080p display, quad-core processor and a set of on-screen navigation buttons.
While HTC says that it will focus more on mid-tier products that are a step down from its flagship hardware, the company isn’t planning on diving into the low-end of the smartphone pool. Chang explained that HTC has no plans to enter the “very, very low-end market,” opting instead to stick to more mid-range offerings that it’ll sell in developed and emerging markets. HTC also has no plans to return to its former identity as a firm that simply manufactures phones for other companies.
HTC used to be one of the top device makers in the wireless industry, but lately the company has lost quite a bit of the market share that it once held. While it’s good to see that HTC’s got a plan to try and regain some of its former glory in 2014, we’ll have to see if it can effectively pull all of its plans into one cohesive effort and effectively market itself and its new hardware. There’s no question that there’s a large segment of consumers that want a nice phone but can’t or don’t want to fork over hundreds and hundreds of dollars for a premium, flagship handset, but it’s up to HTC to convince those people that they should choose an HTC handset over the multitude of offerings from Samsung, LG and others.
What do you think of HTC’s plans for 2014? Will the company be able to regain some of its lost market share with improved marketing and more mid-range phones?