HTC One delayed by two weeks in U.K. Another profit warning coming soon?
HTC One launch has been delayed by two weeks in U.K – from March 15th to March 29th – according to Clove.
To be fair, for now the news come from only one online retailer. So some carriers may get the new flagship earlier. But Clove quotes the official statement from HTC U.K, which says that the launch date has been moved to March 29th. So I wouldn’t hold my breath, the delay is very likely to be country-wide.
That’s terrible news for the struggling Taiwanese smartphone maker. They really really needed to get this one right and have as much breathing room as possible, push as many of HTC One’s as they could, before Samsung’s Galaxy S4 starts shipping.
What’s even worse, the delay now gives additional credence to the rumors from supply chain, that HTC is facing severe component shortages for One. And if that’s the case, the whole plan for their recovery will be derailed before it even starts.
HTC’s monthly sales reached a 3 year low in February. During the earnings call early last month they guided for the sales of NT$ 50-60 billion for Q1. They shipped only NT$ 26.9B worth of smartphones in the first two months of the quarter and are NT$ 23.1 billion short of even the minimal guidance.
Since we didn’t get the profit warning last week, when HTC reported its monthly sales, I assumed they were planning to with huge shipments of HTC One in the last two weeks of March. Effectively doubling their MoM sales and getting a boost from positive media spin. If these shipments are delayed – there is another profit warning coming real soon, with another round of very bad press coverage, effectively destroying all the good will the company built up when it announced and demoed the HTC One flagship.
Add to that the background of all the positive buzz for Samsung’s Galaxy S4, that starts this Thursday, and HTC seems to be in a very big trouble indeed.
Let’s hope it is only a very temporary blip. HTC must know what’s at stake here.