Following Xiaomi's lead, HTC has announced that it will unveil its next global smartphone in India, with a launch slated for sometime during the third quarter of 2015.
Chia-Lin Chang, HTC's CFO and president of global sales, revealed the manufacturer's plans in an interview with ET Telecom, underscoring the importance of the Indian market:
We have a third-quarter plan for our global launch in India to introduce a device which is specifically designed for the Indian consumer.
We were the first company to bring an Android smartphone to the country. Indian market is something that teaches us about new trends, which is always helpful. If we are able to serve Indian market well with the right strategy, we will be able to serve the global market well.
The upcoming mid-range phone will debut in India, and will be made available in other markets around the world at a later date. HTC is considering a price point of ₹15,000 to ₹20,000 for the handset, with Chang stating that the mid-tier category has been a "growth segment for the company for the past one year."
With regards to HTC's overall plans for India in 2015, Chang said that a total of ten devices will be launched by the manufacturer this year, with half of those featuring LTE connectivity. The Taiwanese vendor has already launched its flagship, the One M9+, in the country earlier this month, along with the One E9+. Select devices offering LTE connectivity will be priced ₹20,000 and below, and HTC may even launch a budget smartphone in the country that will retail for under ₹10,000, although the manufacturer's focus in this segment is to ensure a "better experience:"
For Rs 10,000 and below segment, we will be going slightly slower because we want to ensure better experience.
According to the latest data from market research firm CyberMedia Research, HTC currently has a 10 percent market share in the LTE-enabled devices segment, with Xiaomi leading the way with 30.8 percent, followed by Apple with 23.8 percent and Samsung with 12.1 percent. HTC as a whole occupies 6 percent market share in the country, and is targeting to exceed 10 percent in 2015. The manufacturer is also considering manufacturing devices locally, and will finalize its plans on the same within the next four to five months:
We are considering a lot of things. Before getting into manufacturing, we will need to ensure smooth delivery of devices from R&D lab to the end consumer.
Source: ET Telecom