HTC plans to go big on Windows Phone 8. Says they’ve got better carrier support than Nokia

HTC isn’t doing well lately.

In fact, they are doing so bad, that I am starting to have serious doubts about HTC’s long term prospects. But now they think they found a salvation to the sales troubles. And it comes in the form of HTC’s old partner – Microsoft, and the new Windows Phone 8 OS.

The main problem for Taiwanese smartphone maker these days – is Android.

In 2010 and early 2011 HTC rose to prominence on the back of Google’s OS. But that was the easy part. Android was a new and rather immature OS, and HTC was a nimble upstart able to design and ship high quality Android smartphones before anyone else. Furthermore – those were the times of iPhone exclusivity around the world, and carriers that did not have Apple’s phone looked to Taiwanese vendor to provide competitive alternatives. Especially in the U.S. – where most of HTC’s growth came from.

Then, in the second half of 2011 Samsung got really serious about Android with Galaxy S2, and iPhone exclusivity ended. HTC’s sales have been in decline ever since.

Unable to compete with Samsung and Apple on Android, HTC now looks to Windows Phone 8 to change its fortunes. According to HTC president of sales and marketing Jason Mackenzie – their plan is “to go big on Windows 8”.

When asked about Nokia’s special relationship with Microsoft, Mackenzie says that HTC is not afraid, because they have better carrier relations. During the September 5th announcement, Nokia failed to mention even 1 carrier partner who will be pushing Lumia 920 or 820. HTC, on the other hand, has concrete carrier support in every region around the world, including several carriers in the United States. And firm commitments to sell their Windows Phones.

Sounds interesting. But I still have some serious doubts Windows Phone can be a long-term solution to HTC’s issues.

It may provide a short-term sales bounce if the new Microsoft mobile platform takes off. But that is a very big if. And, if Windows Phone phone starts gaining ground on Android, in addition to Nokia, Samsung will be very quick move strongly onto WP8. So in a year or less, HTC will be facing the same problems it now has with Android.

On the other hand, even a short-term boost from Windows Phone would be a very good thing for HTC, until they figure out what to do next.

Via Reuters

Author: Stasys Bielinis

While I like to play with the latest gadgets, I am even more interested in broad technology trends. With mobile now taking over the world - following the latest technology news, looking for insights, sharing and discussing them with passionate audience - it's hard to imagine a better place for me to be. You can find me on Twitter as @UVStaska'

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  • Franc012

    HTC lost its luster with the Thunderbolt. The first 4G phone, from Verizon, was plagued with connectivity problems, terrible battery life, continuous force closes, and freezes. After putting up with all that, mine burned out in 9 months. I, for one, will never buy another HTC product, whether it be an Android or Windows phone.

  • http://twitter.com/bryanilee2 Bryan Lee

    However they may have gotten it back with the One X. That phone seems to have gotten lots of good reviews and seems to be the most popular non-Samsung Android phone these days.

    Nothing stays the same for long in the crazy world of smartphones. In a couple years we may all be using Lenovo Tizen phones – who knows?

  • CDavisUnlimited

    I love how all of the tech bloggers talk about how “bad” HTC is doing, when in fact they are one of only three phone manufacturers that are still profitable. And news broke yesterday that looks like they are going to win a patent ruling against Apple that will quite likely allow them to get an import ban on the new iPhone.

    Have HTC’s sales fallen off a bit? Certainly. On the other hand, they have a great product line in the One series, they’re the number 3 phone manufacturer, are still profitable, and are almost certainly going to be the first manufacturer to win a patent case against Apple in the U.S. So remind me again where this “HTC is doing so bad these days…” garbage comes from again.

  • http://www.staska.net Staska

    “…
    they are one of only three phone manufacturers that are still profitable”

    The key word here is “still” profitable. Losing sales, losing market share, losing margins. Still profitable. Just like Rim was, or Nokia was, or Motorola, or Sony Ericsson, or Siemens, until they weren’t. Only 2 of those 5 are independent companies… for now. HTC is on similar trajectory with no easily seen way to climb out of it.

    ” they have a great product line in the One series”

    I kinda agree on this one. I really like One X better then Galaxy S3. Unfortunately even a very good product is not enough in mobile. As sales numbers are proving. HTC sales with One Series in July and August are way lower then they were in March, before One came along. Even after a huge marketing campaign (by HTC measures) they did in Q2. Before Galaxy S3 launch. Now, with iPhone 5 about to ship – they are simply screwed.

    And HTC “is going to win a patent ruling against Apple that will quite likely allow them to get an import ban on the new iPhone.”

    Let me start with – I have this bridge called “Golden Gate” in San Francisco, and this huge land plot in a Moon Sea – wanna buy it?

    One (of many) small setbacks in uber long legal proceeding doesn’t mean anything. That lawsuit is still months away, and please do check what Apple has against HTC there.

    As for iPhone 5 being banned – damn. That’s a great linkbating argument and comment baiting texts. With as much substance in it as me writing a post “Curiosity is about to find evidence of life on Mars tomorrow”

    That HTC LTE stuff can not ban iPhone 5 anytime soon, because iPhone 5 does not exist now. They’ll have to start when iPhone 5 ships. And it’ll take at least a year to get any result.

    Why do you think Samsung can still sell Galaxy S3 in U.S. when Apple already won a lawsuit and Jury awarded $1B to them?

    And why Apple didn’t ask to ban SGS3 as part of that win? Apple did ask to ban SGS3 – but that’s a totally different lawsuit

    So yep – I am happy to spew garbage I do. Especially when it is simply the truth. Like sales falling 47% YoY or another 4% MoM – that is not a bit. That’s huge. Especially with the new One series that are selling even worse then Sensation sold last year.

  • ian

    Read HTC one x has wi fi connectivity problems… I’m very pissed… I shoulda spent the money for a Samsung galaxy I love to play games but online games telll you that you.aren’t connected… very bad

  • ian

    HTC made bad products in the past an older model died halfway through the contract and had a lot of.stupid problems on top of iffy battery life… forcing me into an LG optimus which I’ll never do again…. now up for an upgrade I bought the one x due to its price tag and am thoroughly disappointed… I work from home and hold a part time driver position with a schol corp… I have a lot of free time to kill and enjoy games… unfortunately I learn it has wi fi connectivity issues and doesn’t seem to recognize network randomly at home with wi fi and. other phones LG never had that problem…. on top of that the LG craptimus had better reception… I will never buy.HTC again

  • CDavisUnlimited

    Well I might be interested in a bridge, but probably not as interested as I am in actual facts. Like the fact that that the One X has sold DOUBLE the number of units as any other HTC product in history including the sensation that you mention and you are flat out WRONG about. And not to mention that their market share in China alone doubled in the first part of this year. But that’s just according to this little site called CNET http://news.cnet.com/8301-1035_3-57508519-94/htc-heres-how-were-going-to-get-back-into-the-game/

    Next, let’s talk about HTC wining the suite against Apple that you think will take years. Now those of us who actually understand how the ITC court process works understand that judgements come very quickly as evidenced by the HTC Evo 4G LTE ban earlier this year that Apple won in the ITC. And according to this little known news agency called Bloomberg, yes HTC is going to win and can ABSOLUTELY get a ban on the iPhone 5 quickly http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-09-06/htc-patents-challenged-by-apple-probably-valid-judge-say.html

    Oh and by the way, the Galaxy S III wasn’t part of the Apple ruling because Apple didn’t include it in the original lawsuit; after winning, Apple then amended the lawsuit to include the SIII which hasn’t been ruled on yet, and no it won’t take years to settle which is at least the third point you are ENTIRELY WRONG about in your post. But hey, let’s not let actual facts that come from real news agencies get in the way of a great story. So please, tell me more about this bridge you speak of.

  • http://www.staska.net Staska

    “One X has sold DOUBLE the number of units as any other HTC product in history including the sensation…”

    Any evidence? About double? Because the sales before One line became available and after paint a very different story.

    “… their market share in China alone doubled in the first part of this year… ”
    Well… how should I parse it?

    “Market share in China” ?

    When you start from very low number – it is easy to claim hude growth. E.g – to grow from 100k units to 200k – its 100 % growth. As is from 1 to 2 percent.

    And growing in China, higely, didn;t help HTC at all – just check hard numbers -sales decline 47% YoY. Somuch for China help whne HTC can’t even keep sales at the March level ($NT30B) – when they didn’t even sell One line.

    And about patents. We can star a coversation when you read up on that.

    Apple now owns 5% of LTE, Samsung 10% or more. THen there are others. All of that are FRAND. Did you hear about any bans based on FRAND patents?

    And – with Samsung owning 10% of LTE,, Apple almost 5% and HTC not even in top 10. Do you really think they have that one magic patent that will help them win?