HTC

It appears any optimism at HTC in the wake of its profitable second quarter could be short-lived. The company has just reported its unaudited monthly revenue figures for July 2014, showing a sharp decline compared to the previous month, and the same period in 2013. In July the Taiwanese phone maker brought in NT $10.605 billion ($354 million), down from NT$21.917 billion in June, and NT$15.728 billion in July 2013 — a fall of 51.61 percent month-on-month and 32.58% year-on-year. The figures likely represent a tailing-off of sales of the company's flagship HTC One M8 handset, which launched in late March before becoming more broadly available in April.

HTC estimates revenue of between NT$42 billion and NT$47 billion in the third quarter, leaving the company with a lot of ground to make up in August and September if it's to hit that target. The news follows the recent departure of two high-level HTC executives — CMO Benjamin Ho and operations head Fred Liu.

Later this month HTC is expected to launch a Windows Phone version of its flagship One M8, with the phone likely to hit Verizon in the U.S. shortly after announcement. Elsewhere, HTC continues to push mid-range and entry-level products like the Desire 816 and Desire 610.

As for the remainder of the year, sources tell AC that HTC will also launch a new Nexus tablet in collaboration with Google, as well as its own smartwatch — however neither is likely to arrive in time to make a difference to the company's Q3 earnings. In the meantime, perhaps HTC can take solace from the fact that arch-rival Samsung's profits are also down.

 

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HTC revenue declines sharply in July

107 Comments

Haha how about LG not making enough nexus 5 to begon with? LG does not even profit from selling those anyway...

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Enough by what standards? If we're going to start talking about ephemeral numbers like, "huge" then we can spin our wheel all day with semantics.

And yes, they do profit from Nexus devices. Are they doing it for charity? The kindness of their hearts? An OEM wouldn't agree to make a Nexus in the first place if it wasn't worth their while. Don't be silly.

I think he was using the tangible metric of "a butt-load" as the measuring stick. Did they sell a butt-load? lol

First, LG only made what Google ordered.

Last, of course LG made money on the phone, it is Google that lost by splitting the cost with the consumer

Finally, while not huge numbers, the sales for the Nexus 5 were the best of any Nexus phone.

there's no way the nexus 5 cost more than 250 to build... everybody involved made a profit, just not a gargantuan one like flagships are accustomed to providing

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You are joking right? The component costs are more than $250. That does not even bring ancillary costs into play

Yeah, LG made a profit but probably about as slim a profit as you can make while still making the effort worthwhile... I could actually see OEM shying away from the Nexus program now that Google's publicly sharing beta code for upcoming Android releases in advance.

That was the sole advantage for OEM, outside of some guaranteed sales and a certain amount of cachet amongst enthusiasts, but even the latter is now more subdued as Google has pushed for a more homogenous Nexus design (at least with the 5/7, 8 might break that convention and showcase more of the OEM's design).

I could actually see a company like HTC making even less off a Nexus, Samsung and LG make their own displays, batteries, etc. HTC has to buy a lot more components than them (in many cases FROM them)... I say all this as a big fan of the Nexus program and a current Nexus 5/7 owner.

I think the price point the last few Nexus pushed was a big deal, if nothing else, and i hope it either carries on or translates to Silver somehow.

It won't translate to Silver just because the OEMs are not going to sport the bill like Google did.

It is one of the reasons that the Nexus line is going down the tubes. The OEMs do not want Google subsidizing the cost of the phones and dragging the prices down in a time when the market is starting to contract.

Hmm, it'd be sad to as the program (on the phone side) die like that, basically lack of OEM interest killing it... But OEM like Moto and OnePlus are also pushing price points lower so I'm not sure Nexus phones will fade to black entirely because of this. I don't have much faith in the latter but hopefully Motonovo sticks to what they've been doing.

Well like everything else electronic (and otherwise to be frank) as the demand lessens (smart cell phones are reaching the saturation point) the prices will drop to have people upgrade sooner.

In essence you make the killing up front and in the middle just on the price, then you hope for the quantity at the end. PCs are a prime example.

Exactly! Google has never released any sales numbers so no one knows how many were sold. I seriously doubt it was in the millions. At best it was few hundred thousand.

No I would not be surprised at all if they sold a million and a half. They had more places to retail it this time around.

And it was compatible with more carriers and bands than ever, which people forget. There was no phone that could work on LTE across three national carriers before the Nexus 5.

My subsequent responses to others indicate that I'm not. Nexus popularity has been on a steady upswing since the 4 and considering the desperate popularity of the N5 as indicated by the months of backlogged pre-orders, it's availability in brick and mortar retailers, and pretty much every single tech pundit's speculation that it may have finally broken out of its status as a niche product (because of initial enthusiasm), it's not unrealistic to predict that the next version of the device will be even more popular.

A few million is not "huge" in my book and isn't all that popular. It's still just a small niche just not as small as it was with previous models.

It is for the person using it. To be more factual, it's not the best product, but the one that becomes the most popular, that becomes successful. Even bad products can become the industry standard.

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i would have gotten the silver color yesterday if they made it for t-mobile! but unfortunately the only made the gun metal color for t-mobile which i hate.

I agree.

The M7 and M8 are stellar devices, minus the admittedly disappointing camera, but they're the best devices HTC has made.

Just wish they would give it better marketing. A phone this awesome deserves better ads.

The Desire HD was my first Android Phone. Hung onto that one until I got a GS3. Never again. I'm using a Moto X now, and I love it, but I'm really impressed with the evolution of Sense. If HTC is still around when I decide to upgrade again, I'd really like to own one again.

It's their advertising. Those commercials were just god-awful.

Ask the internet? Blah blah blah?

I bet they wasted tens of millions on those ads.

HTC marketing has been consistently awful for a while... Last year it was the weird Robert Downey Jr. spots, this year they went the opposite direction with Gary Oldman yet still managed to waste his talents too, it's sad.

They need to stop trying to be flashy or quirky and just go back to basics with marketing, focus on the product and the product alone. Some of LG's recent ads have been pretty on point, Samsung's may be a bit smug but they're as effective as anything Apple ever did.

HTC isn't Nike or BMW, they can't try to sell the brand before the product or capture people's attention with weirdness when the viewer doesn't even know what they're being sold.

Not even debatable any more now that the G3 is available. But I sill prefer HTC for the audio which is waaay better than anything else.

Well my m8 got a scratch or some film on the camera lens so I sent it to HTC to get repaired. Funny, I got my oneplus one and took a picture of it with my m8 and it was blurry.... Alot of other people have this problem too. Well going to sell the m8 when I get it back. I will miss the boom sound speakers and the ir blaster. The OnePlus one is an awesome phone though! Love sandpaper back and running Pacman rom right now. Anyone know of external ir blaster for android? Really miss it, though I lived without it for years when I had iPhones.

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If that if that's your only concern then don't return it. If you wipe down the lens and take the film off then it'll take clear pictures again. This was a widely discussed problem when the phone first came out.

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Also 4mp camera isn't working for me, oneplus one takes much better pictures.

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So it's a fail by Samsung, HTC and Sony (Smartphones not profitable). LG gets a pass.

Though for HTC they don't really have as much backup income as buffer compared to the others

Once HTC is gone, I wonder who will be the next piñata for the Android community to beat on (especially the SFanboys). Can you hear me Chou ?x1000.

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I hope not. I would lose all faith in the Android community if that happens.
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I don't have much faith in them to begin with; rabid OEM loyalty is ridiculous. I may have issues with Samsung products that come from my personal experience, but I'm not going to sneer at all my friends that are perfectly happy with them.

Yeah, I never really understood this weird schism of fanboy-ism in the Android world... Though I guess it's not unheard of, you look at PC gamer message boards and you have AMD vs Intel and NV vs AMD... Choice of OEM is one of the very things that makes Android great tho.

Lenovo is a favourite punching bag for people, just go to r/thinkpad to see the neckbeards flip out over design changes

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While I'm frankly not a big fan of the M7/M8, I do hope HTC perseveres, as they're willing to try out a lot more outlandish stuff than some of the other OEM and they always had a stronger sense of design than any (the Nexus One looked and felt better than anything back then, early Desire models had full aluminium builds even before Apple themselves had tried it, etc).

I think they've been focusing a bit much on gimmicky stuff tho, and gambling too much in the process (case in point, the M7 camera and the M8's second sensor). I don't know that this is really what sunk them tho... Is the average buyer aware of the fact that a couple tech blogs rate the Samsung/LG cameras better? I'd be very surprised at that unless they have techy friends who are into all that.

My sister is happy with her M7's camera and she also shoots a DSLR! HTC's problems don't stem from having one weak feature or anything tech related IMO, they're endemic industry problems. The original One X could've been their biggest seller ever but it was confined to AT&T in the US, they didn't have the leverage at the time to climb out of the quagmire of carrier exclusivity and carrier specific models like Samsung had... Then Qualcomm parts got hard to source so they followed it with a bunch of confusing variations.

Now they don't have the marketing budget to gain the exposure Samsung has, nor the sheer mass in order be able to leverage innovations from other divisions like Samsung, LG, or Sony. HTC desperately needs a parent company like Moto did when it was deep in the red, except Moto held far more value in patents from year's past. BTW I really enjoyed owning all three HTC EVO, tho right now I wouldn't pick a One if I could have any phone (wouldn't even be my third choice) but I don't think my personal preference has any bearing on the company, they still make desirable phones.

I just don't see how a company like HTC survives. Even someone like ASUS has other divisions to float their mobile business when they stumble, HTC's focus may be their greatest asset but also their demise. At the very least they need to get into tablets, watches, etc. The fate of the company can't depend on a single phone a year and whether it manages to garner enough attention regardless of how good/bad it is.

When your flag ship phone has a few inches on the bottom that are utterly useless and smaller vertical space due to using virtual buttons, competing with LG phones with super thin bezel and Samsung with much better utilization of screen / phone size and be the heaviest and most expensive out of the pack along with relatively late updates, unfortunately that's what happens.

The market is desperate for a pure google experience phone that covers 2-3 sweet spot phone sizes I.e. 4.3" 4.8" and 5.3" and give them the same first class attention and quick updates, thin bezels, no waster screen real estate space or bloatware or ultra packed pixels the eye can't recognize above 1080p which kills the battery.

I respectfully disagree with you about the late updates part and what the market is desperate for.
HTC has been rolling out updates as fast as the best of them since the M7.
Me personally I'm desperate for dev edition phones without carrier bloat.
Most people don't even know what a google experience so not sure how they'd be desperate for it.

I'm likely wrong as you pointed regarding the updates for HTC phones as I didn't follow that closely, as I was thinking Google Edition / Nexus phones when I wrote that, so that applies to all other competing phones aside from the Google Sponsored ones. Also, I agree with you most people don't know what a pure Google experience is aside from hardcore fans and geeks like those on these forums, that was poorly phrased on my side; but similarly they don't know what a Samsung or HTC / Sense experience is ..etc. they just get different front ends when they look at different Android phones which can confuse the common buyer, hence they go for brand names like Samsung ..etc.

How I would hope the market shape up to which overtime would benefit everyone, consumers / manufacturers, including opportunities for OEMs to differentiate themselves. Release the phone with a standard build, that can get updated very easily and very quickly to latest and greatest Android. All your extra / bloatware should be distributed as standard add-ons which can be defaults like launcher Skins ..etc. and special apps that make the phone more attractive i.e. additional camera apps, but with the option to opt-out and not requiring an OS update to update them. Also the phone size perspective is Huge, you have 2 camps, one swearing by large phones trashing small ones like the iPhones and others saying I don't want to put a slab on my face for 5" phones! Apple lost huge market share as it ignored larger form factors, and I strongly believe Android lost major market share for smaller phones, and I think if every manufacturer focus on only 3 size one for kids / small hands, a sweet spot middle and one for phablet lovers and all get the same tender love and care from upgrades ..etc. that would be fantastic.

While I agree auth the size aspect and even the comments about HTC's wasteful use of space, I disagree that this is why they're doing badly. Moto has actually already done everything you described software wise (very stock build with a few key add on features updated thru Play) AND they even went after the smaller form factor market with the X, yet they aren't doing much better.

Marketing and PR sells a lot more phones than enthusiasts think. When Joe six pack (or even a busy professional) walks in to renew his contract he's most likely to buy the phone with the most media exposure or even the one some employee at the carrier store recommends (usually one and the same).

I'm not sure if the market is clamoring for what you think they are. Based on demand, popularity, and market share numbers I think that most of what you mentioned is of little important to the general buying public.

I'll talk out my butt and say that HTC could do everything you've mentioned and it wouldn't make a bit of difference (significant impact) in their revenue.

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After getting the G3 I can't go back to any android phone with a crap camera. And the M8 is just one step up from Crap in that department. Otherwise it's a great phone. Just jump in their HTC and give us a great camera and I will gladly give you my money.

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The camera is crap in comparison to the G5, Note 3, G3, Z2-3...damn near everything outside of the X and the Nexus 5. In a vacuum it isnt bad but when you compare it you see how bad it fails.

It's all relative, all those cameras are also crap in comparison to a Panasonic GM1, Sony RX100, etc... ;) I'm not sure people are aware of how good or bad a phone's camera really is tho, outside of enthusiasts I mean... That'd be an interesting poll. I think even enthusiasts aren't really aware of how good/bad their smartphone cameras are in relation to other options, and why (the why is arguably the most important fact IMO).

yeah but lets compare apples to apples here. Of course a swiss army knife like a smartphone is going to pale in comparison to a dedicated camera.

If I am buying a smartphone, I want it to do everything well, not one thing great (boomsound), several things well (Sense and everything with it) and a really crappy thing (the camera obviously)

Have you actually used the camera on the M8? Crap does not even begin to convey how execrable the pic quality is.

Because their numbers this quarter are down too. LG is taking some of their customers with the G3. Which is a far better phone than the S5.

Hey I did my part.
I convinced my wife to get the M8 which is a nice device.
Had the G3 not existed I probably would've gotten it for myself.

If HTC could figure out how to shrink Boom Sound down & have a smaller size to its chassis.....

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That one's easy, they've already done it in models outside the One series... Stop hyping fake stereo, step down to one good front firing speaker instead, and done.

Safe to say Ultrapixels, BoomSound and BlinkFeed aren't major selling points to the average consumer at this point in time. Time to go back to the drawing board HTC and scrap your current design or make some major refinements.

I'll say that the HTC brand itself isn't a major selling point to consumer. The market share, Fortune 500 ranking, Forbes ranking, valuable brands ranking, etc all indicate to me that there is very little HTC can do (related to changing the aesthetics of their devices) to improve their financial standing.

In a landscape where the Galaxy and iPhone brand of products have more exposure, it is all but impossible to garner the same level of attention unless they have the financial resources and efficient marketing strategy to do so.

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I disagree... Put in a real camera & modern sized bezels (maximize screen in chassis - i.e. G3) and you have a world class phone people would buy. As it sits only the HTC fanbois (iPhone users that defected to Android and feel they need a Alum chassis) buy the HTC. Once they all got their shinny new phone HTC sales plummeted.

Well, I respect your opinion. However, if we rewind back to when the EVO 3D was released, that's when they started to decline in market share and comparative revenue.

Follow that fact with the Facebook phone, EVO4GLTE, One X,X+,S,SV,Desire lineup, Window's Phones, and tablets, you will see that their decreased profitability started before their focus on crafting their devices using mostly aluminum, so I'm not sure how you've reached that conclusion.

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People are getting sick of Samsung (becoming an Apple) and looking for alternate options. LG has stepped up and released a great phone but not without a few shortcomings (mainly software). I for one would be an HTC owner had they released a phone with modern bezels, the HTC One (M7 & M8) are so 2010 with thos hideous bezels. JMO...

I have to agree with you Habiib. HTC did wonders getting the original Desire and Evo out. The Evo is what brought me over from WebOS. Once the 3D hit it seemed like HTC lost design language, update scheduling, marketing etc.

The EVO 3D was a minor stumbling block, that was the first year Samsung started pushing thin and it caught others off guard... The following year's HTC One X was arguably a better or more complete phone than the M7 or M8 tho (relative to the competition, SGS3 for the former and SGS4/5 & G2/3 for the latter).

The One X had a unique unibody build AND a solid camera and it still didn't w sell well, something went wrong but it wasn't their I'm their product line. The One X was handicapped in the sense that only AT&T had it tho and Samsung's big big push across all carriers reached it's summit with the SGS3.

A "modern size bezel" means removing the speakers. I can only speak for myself but that would turn me away from the phone, not towards it.

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Bezels are on the sides too and that has nothing to do with the speakers. Yeah, the S5 has similar side bezels but that's one reason I went with the G3 as LG seems to be the only one that can get the form factor right by maximizing the screen in the chassis. None the less I don't get the whole boom sound on a phone.. If I want real quality sound from my phone I'll play the music out my stereo. I'd much rather have the larger screen in the same size chassis then the boom sound. You obviously feel otherwise and the good thing is that there is a phone to meet all of our needs, at least for now.

The camera is the issue. HTC always seems to find a way to shoot itself in the foot. The M8 is a great device (even though I think the metal body is WAY overrated) but the camera relegates it to an also ran

Same goes for metal body. If they go back to the drawing board I personally hope they keep the BoomSound (and headphone amp), but Blinkfeed, Ultrapizels and all-metal don't do anything for me. And yeah stop with the really bad advertising.

All phones have a headphone amp, how do you think they're powered otherwise? HTC might've built a slightly better one into theirs, but that quickly got lost in marketing and that's one of their biggest issues, awful marketing. Bad marketing hurts more than a bad camera or any other technical spec ultimately comes down to personal preference.

From what I can surmise, high-end HTC phones since the beginning of "Beats Audio" like the Resound and 8X and beyond have a discrete 2.55V headphone amplifier for driving full-size headphones with more power and better stereo separation. I have gone into a Sprint store more than once and plugged some expensive cans into my HTC EVO 4G LTE and blew my mind with the volume and clarity, and found the exact same result on an M7 or M8. Samsung and LG phones don't have anywhere near the power. I use mine with motorcycle helmet speakers everything is as loud & clear as I want. With my old (pre-Beats) EVO, I needed to use one of those FiiO external iPhone headphone amplifiers. I just hope whatever HTC makes going forward always has that headphone power. It's a great feature, but typical of HTC marketing weakness, they let everyone think Beats was only some kind of bass-boosting software equalizer.

See, had they gone into specifics about the amp and why it's better I would've been much more interested... Instead they glazed some Beats marketing all over it and diluted their efforts. Maybe amp tech specs aren't sexy to the average buyer but it seems Beats glitz didn't fare too well either.

I'm not gonna drive full size headphones off my phone (all my full size hp are open anyway) but my V-Moda M80 would probably still benefit from a better than average amp. It's been a while since I've compared my phone with my venerable SanDisk Clip Zip...

I did it when I had the EVO LTE and was satisfied enough with the latter, can't say I've done the same with my Nexus 5 but I'm often using a Sony MW600 BT receiver anyway so that takes over amp/DAC duties. Wasn't LG saying something about the G2's amp too? Or was it just the fact that it could play lossless stuff?

I wish someone actually tested for this kinda thing, Anandtech's been getting into it but only way later after the actual reviews. Hopefully they can ramp it up...

But why wouldn't you want the metal body if you could have it? Why try to get them to make the phone worse? Makes no sense.

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Not sure what people were expecting here. I said HTC small profit from last quarter were a combinations of cost cutting, the launched of the M8 and some accounting tricks to help it turned that small profit. I got cursed/slamed at by a lot on this forum as an apple fanboy. Those are not going to work every quarter, you can only cut so much and accounting can only work here and there. It looks like the real world brought HTC back to its money losing ways. You can't win a race to the bottom on any platform. The pc industry is prime example and some folks are letting their emotions getting in the way, there is no magic formula here, if they were the pc vendors would have figured it out already. I am talking about those who are no longer around or just basically walking zombies like dell.

No one should have given you a hard time for speaking the truth. The breakdown of their financial report was proof that you were correct in your analysis.

They've cut costs where they could, including removing their presence from less profitable markets. They've created more midrange offerings targeting they largest smartphone consumer base in China. They've improved the release cycle process to ensure that the supply chain could keep up with demand and provided immediate availability of the M8. I'm not sure what else it is that they could do. I'm definitely not confident that their decision to enter the wearables market (which may not be that profitable).
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Loved my original HTC Desire. Used it for close to 4 years, never gave up on me even though I wasn't the most careful of users. Dropped the phone so many times its not even funny, yet the thing went on and on.

Felt sad to pass the phone down to my younger brother but it was getting sluggish. Custom rooms, kernels etc helped it run this far.

Got myself the FHD nexus 7 and went back to my old feature phone while I wait for the next Android phone with L.

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Grr..disappointing. Hate to see them go away and be only left with Moto and Sony to make great android phones. LG and Samsung don't count some they make OK phones.

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even though I'm on Motorola now, I can still vouch for HTC & say they do in fact make quality phones. & sense 6 is a huge improvement from earlier versions.

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It will take a while for hTC to regain its reputation though. I wish they do, but it will be difficult.

E8 only looks great on paper, with its 13 mp camera, but in reality the images taken were not great.

It's over for HTC. If the M8 couldn't save it then nothing can really, even a better camera...
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I seriously would have bought the M8 coming from the One X if the bezel/front of the phone wasn't so ugly. Well the camera part, too, but probably 75% appearance, 25% camera.

Bummer. I considered upgrading last month, but didn't feel it was urgent after getting Sense 6 on the M7. Hopefully, HTC can get do well next quarter. Then again, with Windows Phone users accustomed to excellent cameras, I wonder if they'll be happy with the W8. I, personally, have no issues with the UltraPixels, though.

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In my opinion since the HTC One M7, HTC has made the best android devices. I hope they are able to maintain as I would probably leave Android if they ceased production.