HTC

Late last week, HTC posted its Q2 results for 2012, and they weren’t pretty. Profits are down 60 percent year over year.  But perhaps the most visible sign of decline comes from revenue. After all, consumers don’t necessarily know if a company makes money based on what it sells. But if HTC sells fewer phones, it’s a highly visible change. And that’s exactly what has been happening. HTC revenues dropped by more than 25 percent in Q2.

This week the Taiwanese manufacturer posted results for July, and sales were down by 45 percent. This is worrisome because it suggests HTC’s revenue woes are accelerating, not easing.

The problems faced by HTC are serious. With Android having gained so much market share over the last couple of years, the only way to explain HTC’s performance is a loss of consumer appeal. When people think about Android, the brand that comes to mind is clearly Samsung.  The smartphone market, at the high end, has essentially consolidated around Apple's iPhone and Samsung's Galaxy families. Then, waiting to duke it out for a slice of the action will be Microsoft/Nokia and the Windows Phone 8 Lumia phones, along with Research in Motion’s BlackBerry 10 (neither of which have hit the market).

At least RIM and Microsoft/Nokia are competing with their own platforms, so it’s not a straight-up fight on hardware. HTC essentially has to fight Samsung while using the same operating system and a much weaker supply chain than the Korean giant, which can supply itself with come of the necessary components. HTC doesn't have that option.

HTC isn’t saying how many phones it shipped this year in Q2, but analysts are pegging the number somewhere less than 10 million.  Compare this to Samsung, who shipped more than 52 million smartphones in the same period.  Samsung is more than 5 times larger, is a much more diverse company, has arguably better products and has incredible brand power.  This makes it incredibly difficult to compete against them, which is why we’re seeing HTC shift its focus to China and India, in the hopes of cracking into the lower-cost markets.

Unfortunately, as we’ve seen from RIM, fighting in the low-cost markets without (or perhaps with) a high-end product is a recipe for disaster. Just like RIM is trying to do now, HTC needs to have a flagship product that drives volume in developed nations, on which to earn better profits. If it can’t accomplish this, it may be unable to survive.  Sure, it has the HTC One series, which has garnered fantastic reviews. But if the market sees Samsung as the “go-to” brand for Android phones, it’s a tough battle for HTC. (And that's to say nothing of the marketing dollars Samsung's spending this summer on the Galaxy S3.) And fighting for sales of a high-end phone in lower cost markets isn’t any easier given average income levels. HTC’s stock peaked last spring, and is down more than 75 percent since that peak. The smartphone volume shipments coming out of HTC are not that much different from Chinese competitor ZTE (Android), or even Canada’s RIM (BlackBerry). 

It seems to me there are plenty of bodies still to fall in the smartphone wars. HTC may well be one of them. Question is, what is it doing to stop this from happening?

 
There are 102 comments

jalb says:

It figures. Right after I drop $200 on their "flagship" device.

HTC was doing great in 2010 when it had the biggest phones with the highest definition displays. They promised to quit putting out low-end low def crap.

But since then HTC just can't seem to help themselves from the small stuff. Samsung is all over 4.8" and 5.3" HD. HTC is stuck focusing in on the low end again.

Even now, HTC still can't figure out why they were on top starting in the summer of 2010 and by last summer were a tiny memory.

Go big or go home.

Goatzilla says:

Stop putting Sense on your phones, and maybe I'll consider buying one.

CeluGeek says:

+1 Every time I see an HTC phone, my first thought is "Ugh, a Sense phone!"

toxicious says:

I must say that you made a bad choice in username,
we geeks know that you can get rid of Sense with custom roms, and you are obviously not one of us.

J0ESK0 says:

I know how to install custom roms as much as the next geek.. but I still think to myself the same thing about sense. It's terrible. All skins are and should be allowed to be removed by the user if they choose to. Not to mention the One X was never officially given the bootloader unlock treatment and was their newest flagship phone.

jarobusa says:

Touchwiz doesnt seem to be an issue with Samsung. Unless you prefer Touchwiz over Sense?

Ugh. Sense is a million times better than TW.

mwara244 says:

all skins suck, sense, blus, touchpiss. I'm so glad google will be letting 5 companies this year develop nexus phones. I'd love a motorola nexus with an unlocked bootloader and their great hardware.

TenshiNo says:

The problem with this statement is that some of us actually *like* Sense. You do realize, if you just really despise the Sense launcher for some reason, you can always run a different launcher? I know, in the past, the big complaint for Sense was how slow it made the phone run and I would agree with that to an extent. My Evo4G seemed noticeably faster once I put Cyanogenmod on it. Newer versions, however, have not shown this to be the case.

When HTC originally ported their Sense code over from the WinMo phones, it was definitely unoptimized, but they've had some time to polish it. And Sense adds some features I miss when I try going to an AOSP rom, now.

If the problem is that you don't like the launcher for some reason, well... that's not really a problem. The beauty of Android is you can use something else. If you don't like some other aspect of Sense, I'd be curious to know what it is.

Personally, I think Sammy's TouchWiz is hideous. And while, yes I could use another launcher, they have a *bad* track record with device updates. One that even predates Android. And I just really don't like that center button at the bottom.

And I'm still holding the Backflip against Moto, even though that's probably not fair at this point :)

SwedBear says:

Well, Touchwiz doesn't seem to stop people from buying Samsung phones and I think the latest Sense is miles better than Touchwiz .

HTC wasted their lead by release to many crappy phones in 2010 and as great as the HTC OneX is (I have one) it is hard to change the perception people got from last year.

Bkmike23 says:

I wanted to get the new evo lte but all the negative press on the company worries me

TenshiNo says:

I got the original EVO4G when it came out. I got the EVO 3D when it came out. I still have both phones. I use the EVO4G as a Wi-Fi only device now, but I have loved both phones. What negative feedback worries you? Just the concern of them going out of business?

mike31082 says:

As far as the new EVO LTE goes I wouldn't say its the hardware that's the problem but Sprint at the moment.

I had the original EVO 4g and currently have the EVO LTE which I really enjoy. I preffer Sense over touchwhiz. My main complaint with the Sense UI was the old dock style but HTC has changed that.

I think the hardware is great but obviously Samsung has the name recognition.

Unibrow says:

Htc's problems are going to continue to get worse unless they can continue to make good hardware, less bloat and at least match competitors spec wise. Get rid of this unlocking non sense and ditch the encrypted bootloaders.

Ironically, if they went with stock Android that would be the biggest thing to differentiate them from everyone else making phones, aside from the nexus. Im confident that htc is going to continue to get it wrong though

Feech says:

So true about going stock.

icronic says:

It was the surprise S-On (and locked bootloader) update that soured my opinion of hTc.

Before that, I was their biggest fan. My mantra was that I had not found anything that I wanted a smartphone to do, that I could not make my hTc phone do (including Sync seamlessly with my desktop MS/Outlook!)

You have to wonder why they did it.

My guess is pressure from the carrier(s) (Sprint!)

Well there's that, AND trying to keep up with Android's rapid-fire metamorphosis from one version to the next.

This probably doesn't directly affect manufacturing as much as it forces devs to abandon their work on 1 year old or less devices in order to move on to, as Samsung deftly puts it, The Next Big Thing.

It was a perfect storm of sorts, in the end.

Glenuendo says:

I agree wholeheartedly. I know there will be differences of opinion on Sense. That doesn't matter one way or the other for me. The locked bootloader on my EVO 3D however, really frustrates me. I'm gonna be very leery about that when I make my next purchase.

Gekko says:

in my opinion - HTC is not RIMM. HTC is not going anywhere for a long time. HTC had a few years of incredible growth but that growth rate was not sustainable - and they hit a wall. HTC's big problem from a Wall Street perspective is EXPECTATIONS - expectations that were based on that recent years gangbusters growth which is no longer now that the Android (and smartphone) market has become very crowded. HTC and analysts had set high expectations which have had to be slowly (and painfully for HTC and its shareholders) cranked down quarter after quarter when it became obvious they were not realistic. did HTC fail to innovate and rely on gimmicks? absolutely. did Samsung execute and innovate better? absolutely. does that mean HTC is going out of business like RIMM any time soon? no.

so what does it mean for HTC if they continue on this same path? my prediction is that they will end up a lot like DELL - a maker of high volume low margin commodity hardware running a popular open non-proprietary OS. slow boring with mediocre profits and growth - and the market has/will price this in. in other words, "commodity hell". but better to be in the "commodity business" than "out of business" - see RIMM. and without Android, HTC would be "out of business".

This evolution maybe my last. I'll have one fewer choice. I love my evos but I can buy only one phone

liddellw1 says:

One thing most Android users like about their phones are the ability to have control of their phones in all aspects. This is one of the things that separates Android from Apple. I would never purchase a phone that comes without a battery that I can replace myself. Personally, I prefer phones with replaceable batteries and SD Cards.

Most? More like a minority. Don't get me wrong, I'm in that minority.

CeluGeek says:

The One X has better build quality, a better camera and a better display than the Galaxy S III. Guess which one sold like cupcaces? The one with a replaceable battery and expandable storage.

ballistic90 says:

The HTC One series also had very little media presence outside websites like these. I work in Philadelphia and there's ads for Samsung's phones everywhere.

jbrandonf says:

Yea but not because of those reasons. It's purely marketing. Consumers really don't care about that stuff. Can you imagine having to explain why and how to transfer app data to the SD card to a regular person? Not fun.

crxssi says:

You *CAN* replace the battery in the One X and Evo LTE yourself. It takes about 5 minutes, it is not a quick-swap.

curley says:

Galaxy S III releasing on all 4 US carriers helps. If the the HTC One X had been released on VZW, that may have made a bigger impact. I know I would own that phone right now. There are a lot of people that would have.

Erievon says:

+1. That's all I'm holding out for is a One X variant on VZW. Maybe this X+ will come to VZW in the fall .

The SGSIII is nice, but I just like HTC hardware better.

+2 Thank you for saying it. The reason I own a Galaxy S3 right now instead of an HTC phone is that Verizon customers seem to get the dregs of HTC hardware ever since the original DInc came out. Release your flagship phone on ALL the major US carries HTC. There is a reason why Samsung has sold so many feaking S3's and universal availability is certainly one of them. I would much rather give you my money than Samsung but you haven't offered me anything worth buying in a long time (anyone says Incredible LTE and I will throat punch them...)

Linebarrel86 says:

HTC must create the One brand and not allow it to be changed to fit what carriers want.

Honestly, they shouldn't have created 3 different tier phones. Or at least left out the One S.

The One X should not have been changed for Sprint. The EVO brand may be slightly more known, but it's by no means a hugely recognized brand like the Galaxy. HTC needs to stick to their guns and push forward with the One brand.

Clearly, having a 'superior' screen and build quality aren't enough.

Google, get out your wallet. It's time to buy HTC.

I agree about uniting the brand name,though I feel HTC should stick with the EVO name for all it's flagship line devices.

TenshiNo says:

Only problem is that I'm pretty sure Sprint owns the rights to the "Evo" brand, at least in the US. There's only been one "Evo" released on a carrier other than Sprint, and that was the Evo3D on Virgin Mobile UK. And even that might have been a special deal between Sprint and Virgin.

deckoff says:

I live in Europe, though, and I only read about Evo. What I know is Desire + Wildfire line...
I think it was a good decision to unite the brands, but they should not bloat it with so many phones which are almost identical to each other.

Erievon says:

OOO, hate to say it but I do like that idea. Google buys HTC and leaves the hardware division alone. Just axe the sense (Although I don't mind sense really)and let all Nexus devices come from HTC. Word.

Erievon says:

.

crxssi says:

I would not have bought a One X on Sprint. The changes to make the Evo LTE- black, nicer case, kickstand, larger battery, camera button, and *SD CARD SLOT* are what made the decision.

It is more unfortunate that the Evo LTE didn't have 2GB of RAM. THAT model should have been what became available as their flagship and on more than one carrier.

Oh well.

Hardware is not HTC's problem,it's continuing reliance on their Sense OS "skin" is.They need to get out of the phone OS business and let Google do their thing. Android has advanced to the point where ICS & JB can stand on their own.Synergize OS updates with Google so their phones can update along with Google's Nexus line or immediately after.Perhaps HTC can offer Sense,or at least the more popular parts of, in the Play Store as Apps? As for hardware,my Rezound has fantastic hardware and I know the One series is very well equipped as well. HTC is nowhere close to being in the same position as RIM..........yet.

hmmm says:

Other than people on tech forums I have never heard one person say they didn't like Sense. For that matter I haven't heard anyone who disliked any of the skins. I think it has to do with marketing and people buying what other people have bought.

bumpandrun says:

Sense is what causes the dreaded white screen on HTC phones. Stock android would change HTC's entire reputation!

It's not the OS overlay that's the issue itself.It's how it affects the phone performance and future updates.When their phone is laggy or they read about a new OS Google releases for Android and they can't update to it right away(or ever) they blame the phone or HTC.

jarobusa says:

Same for Samsung

TenshiNo says:

Every phone manufacturer has their own "skin".

Samsung = TouchWiz
Motorola = (No longer "officially" called) MotoBlur
HTC = Sense
LG = I *think* they just call it the "Optimus UI". I've never seen an "official" name for it.

It's how they differentiate their phones from other manufacturers. All of the complaints I hear about Sense are baseless, at this point. Yes, early versions of Sense had issues. But all of the complaints are no longer a problem. Everyone who hates Sense now, it's either because they had a bad experience several years ago, or they're just repeating what they hear other people saying.

I actually really like some of the extra features HTC adds to the phone with Sense. The performance problems are no longer there and, if you just don't like the look of the launcher for some reason, you can always use a different one. There are plenty in the AppStore, and many of them are free or only a couple of bucks. Personally, I recommend GoLauncher. It's free, very fast, and has a ton of features. I still use that one on my old Evo4G. And I'm actually using Nova Launcher (Android 4.0+ only) on my Evo3D, just because I like the extra customization options. That one has a free version, and a $3.00 version.

vawwyakr says:

That's only the case because most people don't "know better". If more phones were running stock android there would be fewer people complaining about:

- Slow updates
- Different phones working differently
- Some Apps not working on certain phones
- Phones being abandoned by the manufacturer
- Buggy performance

crxssi says:

+1

As an Android user who can't wait to leave Android because it's the ugliest mobile OS on the planet, I can honestly say Sense is the only redeeming skin for this poor mans excuse for a UI. If Sense didn't exist I would have returned this EVO LTE after day one even with it's incredibly sexy screen.

TenshiNo says:

"Ugliest" is factually incorrect. You don't like it. Fine. But don't state opinions as fact. It makes you sound like a troll.

Personally, I like the "minimalist" look. It's much cleaner than a lot of others I've seen. Plus, you can *easily* get replacement launchers that give you the ability to customize almost everything about how they work. I honestly don't think Google put a lot of effort into the stock launcher, because they don't *really* expect anyone to use that one.

With the ability to make the phone look however you want, to say that you're going to move to another operating system that offers less functionality *solely* on the grounds that you don't like the way the home screen looks is a little silly, IMO.

RETG says:

Not only will I agree but add that out of the 20+ people I know who have android phones; including myself, only one has ever stated how he wants an unlocked phone. The vast majority of android users could care less. We want a phone that has some computer capabilities. That is why, at least where I live in the middle of nowhwere, no one uses Samsung, and only use HTC or Motorola phones; and only Verizon service.

calvin35 says:

You may not have heard anyone say that they hate Sense, but when customers pick up an HTC phone and see lag all over the place and then pick up a similarly specked Samsung phone that doesn't lag they buy the Samsung phone because they hate Sense. They just don't know what "Sense" is.

TenshiNo says:

His point with "people who don't know better" is that people like you get on websites like this and complain about "lag" with Sense, when you obviously haven't actually played with a Sense-based phone in a while. HTC has polished Sense quite a bit in the last few years, and the "lag" you refer to is gone, and has been for quite some time.

hmmm says:

I'd switch to Windows or iOS before I'd buy a Samsung if that's the direction Android is heading.

craigwann says:

I agree 100%. There is no way I would buy a Samsung phone. If Samsung is the face of Android, then Android is UGLY.

I for one, love Sense. I had stock ICS on my Nexus S, and sense ICS on my Evo is way better for me.

I have a few family members with htc Android phones and the complaints are all the same. They hate that sense is no where near as user friendly as stock or touch wiz. Plus every time they upgrade sense the lock screen changes, the launcher changes and for your average consumer that gets confusing.I happen to love htc for the look and feel of their phones but for me this is what I feel needs to change.

1. Stock Android.
2. Better battery life and removable battery. With 4g the option of an extended battery is a must.
3. High capacity storage 32gb is the sweet spot.

Hit those points and HTC can have my money :) Oh and release on all carriers lol

Mooem says:

More importantly on the carrier bit, they need to release across all carriers under one brand. It's time for carrier specific branding (like Droid and EVO) to be phased out.

bumpandrun says:

Agree

dswatson83 says:

YES...This is the biggest reason I returned my Evo LTE for the GSIII. The minute I found out the GS3 would be 1 universal phone, I got my Evo box and headed to the store. Glad I did. HTC needs to limit the amount of phones they produce and spend more time per phone making it better.

I am still (ab)using my 2 year Evo 4g with little issues so these guys do know how to make a solid phone. Personally I like Sense - which is sort of the point:

I hope there continues to be several Android phone makers and HTC and the other smaller makers continue to stay in the Anroid market. I shudder in horror of the possiblity that Android ends up like iOS: all users are stuck with 1 manufacturer who makes 1 phone design.

Choice is good - being forced to use what someone else thinks is the ideal phone is bad.

TenshiNo says:

You, sir, get my daily allotment of internets ;)

still1 says:

I would buy HTC just to support them but only if it releases a nexus

casperi says:

Actually the first manufacture that comes to my mind with android is HTC . Unfortunately when it comes to HTC now I think locked boot loader nonremovable battery no sd-card. Also everyone's forgetting that Apple had an injunction at customs for nearly I think it was two weeks. That had to have a huge impact on sales and if I was HTC I would be suing Apple and some how trying to get back that sales IMPACT image damage in some way shape or form.

I think the manufactures at this point need to really stand up to the carriers in United States and just say hey look these are our phones they come in unlocked boot loader only if you want to carry them this is the way they are if not then tough luck.

TenshiNo says:

Problem is that the "locked bootloader" issue isn't necessarily HTC's choice. The carriers have a *lot* of say over what the manufacturers can do with these phones.

chappo2000 says:

Sense will work fine if you give the OS the hardware it needs to support it. Of course it's going to crash when it's using 700 megish out of 1 gig of RAM.

I came from the OG Evo and now have the Galaxy SIII. Sammy is beatable. The Evo LTE is a fine phone. But the OG Evo had sense reboot problems and the Evo LTE is destined for the same fate.

Users overall picked the SIII this time but with a few hardware improvements it's possible HTC can win round 2.

HTC is not as behind as RIM.

craigwann says:

Got my Evo LTE at launch and haven't had or heard of a reboot problem yet.

Rob White says:

"Of course it's going to crash when it's using 700 megish out of 1 gig of RAM."

You are familiar with how the Android OS handles RAM aren't you? Further more unused RAM is nothing more than wasted RAM on any computer device. 512 MB, 1 gig, 2 gigs... If the RAM isn't getting used or you constantly check a task manager to kill 20-30 MB of RAM back from some random program you are worrying way too much.

DirkBelig says:

I came to Android with the OG EVO 4G on launch day in June 2010. It was great to have the first carrier phone with Froyo. Good times.

Then they started getting gimmicky with 3D and the Gingerbread update so totally borked things with wasted space and it believing that 41MB free space was full that after FOUR MONTHS of battling it, I went and plunked down $500 for a Galaxy S II Epic 4G Touch Long Name Phone. Haven't regretted it for a moment other than losing scrolling wallpapers due to the farking bastages at Apple trying to sue their betters out of the marketplace. (News flash, Apple: You didn't invent the rectangle, glass screens, and rounded corners!)

The thing is that after the EVO 3D, HTC just faded from my radar. The One line seemed confusing with different phones with different specs on different carriers. It made no sense (no pun) which is ironic because the GS2 was also different depending on which flavor you bought but it didn't seem to hurt Samsung.

People are fickle and fortunes change rapidly. When Kick-Ass was filmed in Fall 2008, MySpace was the big thing, but by the time it was released in March 2010, Facebook had already swept past it and it made the movie anachronistic.

Feech says:

Not sure if anyone thought about this but HTC has done some things that explain the numbers somewhat. They decided they were not going to release 200 phones this year and concentrate on just a few kick ass ones. The One series is what they cam up with. A very good series of phones hardware wise that could compete with Samsung. They also did not have any Windows Phones to release either although at this time I'm not sure that would be a good idea either.

My only advice to HTC at this point would only to get rid of SenseUi. At this point you are just being stubborn, back track like you did on beats and let it go. Release with stock. HTC build quality is second to none which is why I will continue to buy HTC phones instead of Samsung

tokuzumi says:

HTC has really worked hard to stop their "sidegrade" phones. It was just stupid to release the same phone over and over, with just a slightly faster processor, or maybe a .1" larger screen, or a tad more internal storage.

What turned me off from HTC was a combination of two things:

1) Since the Evo 4G, they haven't released anything groundbreaking (at least to me). The Evo 3D was nice, but didn't have that same halo feeling the 4G had.

2) The locked bootloader policy. While I'm aware users who root their phones are a small minority, that HTC Unlock tool was a kick in the teeth to people who wanted to hack their phones. Samsung doesn't lock their bootloaders (except for Verizon's GS3). HTC just hid behind "it's what the carriers wanted". If that is truly the case, why has the Galaxy series of phones, with its unlocked bootloaders, sold circles around HTC devices?

I'm inclined to agree that HTC should release more phones with a more vanilla android experience. The one thing HTC should stick with is their facebook integration. Vanilla android does not have a nice clean way to do this, even today.

Samsung earned a lot of brownie points by giving Galaxy phones to the CyanogenMod developers. Maybe a similar gesture by HTC will help the cause?

dswatson83 says:

Android is selling more, Samsung is setting records, Apple is doing very well, and yet HTC seems like they have no idea why there profits are dropping. Take the hint. Stop it with the gimmick phones like the EVO 3D, stop making 15 'desire' models that are all different, and stop spending so much in Sense. Make 2-3 very different high end models a year & 1-2 midgrade models a year, limit the additional Sense 'features' to spend less on programming, and stop making a phone different on every carrier. Recipe to success right there.

snookiesnoo says:

The problem is margins on Android phones. Even the latest phones drop prices pretty soon after introduction. Lots of BOGO offers etc. Thats why Samsung is the only Android manufacturer making money and they won't reveal how much. They also only talk about how many phones have been shipped not how many have been sold.
I think HTC makes pretty good phones with inconsistent quality at times. Sense isn't that bad that it impacts their sales. They simply can't make a profit from Android. In fact they are behind where they were when they started selling Android phones. This is not a sustainable business model.
So when people talk about Android "winning" over iPhone keep this in mind. Apple is taking by far the majority of profits in the smartphone space in devices, accessories, and apps. How many devices you ship or sell is meaningless if you can't make a profit.

vawwyakr says:

Make the phones run stock android with no uninstallable crapware on it, and make sure the updates come out very very quickly. This would serve very much to differentiate themselves in the market and get a lot of attention.

Also make sure your phones have all day batteries with a reasonable amount of usage no compromises.

chappo2000 says:

Can we really expect HTC to dump Sense when Sammy has Touchwiz (which has issues too) and sells 52 million phones?

Google already has the market for stock Android. Without a UI overlay like Sense or Touchwix it ends up a hardware war.

Do you like Smart Stay? Do you like flip to mute? Clearly there is more to add to Android than just stock.

freeoscar says:

I think the market is quickly becoming iPhone vs. Galaxy vs. Nexus. I don't think that getting rid of Sense is a good business decision - Google has clearly decided to compromise profit margins with their aggressive pricing on the Galaxy Nexus and Nexus 7, so I don't see how HTC would make money with stock phones. Samsung's decision to stick with one phone for all carriers with the SGS3 was a tremendous move - they will have substantial marketshare and are creating there own iPhone like ecosystem - the peripheral market in particular will really flower with a potential market of millions of phones. And if Samsung is able to quickly push out JB updates, its game over for the other Android manufacturers.

axllebeer says:

And here I was thinking about grabbing myself an HTC Evo 4G LTE...

21plays says:

htc is now releasing a suped up one x, if i bought the one x this would piss me off. its a slap to the face to all those who bought the one x

smooth3006 says:

no different than moto putting out a razr maxx then a razr hd.

21plays says:

sure, but even so, the razr was released when... and when was the hox released... yeah big dif. one flagship a year is the best strategy. look at apple, google and samsung...

hmmm says:

The gs3 May look the same on all carriers but each carriers phone is just as different as htc's variants on the inside and updates will not be any faster because of how the outside of the phone looks. Samsung is pretty much as bad as they come when updates are concerned.

Still,HTC needs something,some marketing angle, to set it apart from the Samsungs & Motorolas.

smooth3006 says:

rumor has it they may be picking up open webos.

Rob White says:

This could be the really stupid move by HTC. What sense (no pun intended) would it make to use an operating system beloved by a very small few & shrinking daily, that has failed in the market twice. It even manged to completely bankrupt Palm & drove them into HP's loving arms.

People need to forget WebOS. Respectfully, it has no chance of making a dent in the market against the likes of even Windows Phone 8.

BroRob says:

I think the Thunderbolt was the straw that broke the camels back. All the launch delays without HTC communicating with the public, then all the delays on the GB update made things worse. Now TBolt owners are in a holding pattern for ICS with Jelly Bean already released. Even if Verizon is/was to blame for the delays it still makes HTC look bad. I personally don't mind sense and like how easy HTC phones are to unlock the bootloaders and root, but I doubt I'll buy another HTC phone because it's a crap shoot if the phone I buy will actually be supported!

TenshiNo says:

"Even if Verizon is/was to blame for the delays it still makes HTC look bad."

And this could well be the reason the big V was excluded from HTC's latest flagship line.

Shadow Death says:

Maybe if they rolled out software updates in a timely manner. *cough*Thunderbolt*cough* I recently had to give up my NS4G for a Verizon phone, the Tbolt. I was pretty disgusted to see that it still ran GB 2.3.4 with this sluggish crap they call sense which was overly simplified. Who needs a theme button that does the same thing as long pressing a blank spot on the desktop/launcher? Then to make it even worse It's already into August with no word/whisper/leak of an ICS build for the Tbolt, while other phones such as my old NS4G are already rocking JB. Yup, they can shove their phones and their lack of support for anything.

New Phone every 2 months + scarce software update for existing = unhappy customers

Google has shown us with the NS4G and others:

New Phone every year + regular updated software + source = Very satisfied customers

I'm not even going to go into the S-On... I don't want anyone to throw up.

smooth3006 says:

the tbolt will never get ics.

smooth3006 says:

htc's problem is too many new devices and their beloved sense interface.

DAS says:

IMO the challenge's HTC is experiencing has nothing to do with Sense, lack of updates, stock android or numerous phone variations.

IMO the biggest problem they have is the basic lack of marketing. HTC is an afterthought in the general consumers mind.

Think about it; you can't drive down the street, go to tech website (including this one), and or even watch the Olympics without seeing a billboard, add, or commercial pounding the senses with the Samsung Galaxy SIII. Samsung has all but plastered their brand all over the place, and so in the mind of joe or jane blow consumer the only phones available are Samsung and Apple.

Ask 10 people do they know who HTC is, and see what response you get. Ask 10 people do they know who Samsung is, and I bet 8 out 10 will know exactly who they are.

HTC seems to rely upon the carriers to market their products whereas Samsung appears to be much more aggressive and market the socks off of their products themselves.

Although I didn't like the final product, Samsung even spent millions to advertise during the last Superbowl. Where was HTC?

smooth3006 says:

yeah even sense 4.0 takes away from anything ics is suppose to look like. at least moto stayed as true as they could to the stock "aosp" ics experience with the razr update.

DAS says:

BTW, to prove my point about marketing, just look at the advertising to the right of this comment page. On my screen I see no less than 3 Samsung adds.

teevirus says:

Is there a version of their flagship device on Verizon or even rumored to be headed to Verizon? It seems to me if HTC had a simultaneous launch on multiple carriers worldwide like Samsung did with the SIII they would be shipping significantly more of the One series.

I can only imagine how difficult those types of deals are and am frankly surprised that Samsung was able to pull it off.

Smart enough to make a great phone but STupid enough to limit it to 16g internal storage they deserve no sales

ricbon says:

Its the battery life that spread more from word of mouth then probably from tech sites, i had the droid inc loved it but battery life sucked ass.

originaldinc says:

I still have the original Droid Incredible. Great phone but HTC hasn't updated this phone in a very long time. As i see other phones getting updates the dinc gets nothing. This, along with bloat put on the phone, will prevent me from buying another HTC phone. I'm looking at the Google Nexus. That way i'll always get the latest and greatest. Sorry HTC, two years ago i would have bought my whole family HTC phones. Not today.

HTC should start making "Blank" phones and let users decide to either put SENSE or a NON-SENSE os onto their phones ....

TenshiNo says:

I see this "demand" a lot on the tech sites, and it doesn't make *any* sense.

First off, none of the other manufacturers do this. This includes Samsung, Motorola, LG, Asus, etc. They all have their own skin (or at least customization), but no one b$#$&es about it like they do with Sense.

Second, if you don't like the way Sense looks, USE A DIFFERENT LAUNCHER. For the love of god, people. The best thing about Android is that you can *change* this stuff. If you're running an ICS-based phone, grab Nova Launcher. They've got a free version and a $3 version. It looks practically identical to stock ICS, but with a lot more options. The paid version has even more options than the free. Thank you, Captain Obvious. I know. I'm running it on my Evo3D right now. And if anyone wants to tell me they can't afford the paid version: skip the Starbucks *one* morning and you're set.

I can also recommend GoLauncherEX. It's totally free and has a ton of customization options and runs on Android 1.6 and higher.

It's not feasible for HTC to have some popup question "Do you want to use Sense?" It is much more than just the launcher. I don't think a lot of people realize how many small changes Sense adds to the Android OS.

BigKenW says:

I am on my 3rd HTC phone, the EVO 4G LTE. After playing with a Galaxy SII I was tempted to move to the Galaxy SIII when my contract was up. Had there been an announced release closer to the Evo 4G LTE release I would have waited to see both in person. I "feel" like the GSIII is much more fluid than the EVO 4G LTE. I also do not see much ROM development for the EVO 4G LTE. I am going to root here in the next few days and try some custom ROMs to see if it is just me. The phone feels so much slower than when I first purchased it. The battery life also isn't what it was when I first purchased it either. I used to be able to go about 14-15 hours. Now I am making about 8-10 with the same usage patterns.

I feel like my next phone is going to be a Samsung. Oh and that phone is going to be on a faster network if Sprint doesn't turn on LTE soon here in the Boston Market. Probably T-Mobile or Verizon; AT&T not so much.

roltzje says:

Coming from a Galaxy S2, I really enjoy sense 4.0. I believe the previous versions of sense were not that great, but this version is really nice. It has few drawbacks really.

The One X is a fantastic phone, and its difficult to see why HTC's sales are tanking so badly. I guess one part could be that only one carrier has the One X right now, while the Galaxy S3 and iPhones are ubiquitous. It seems that HTC ran into far more problems getting their base phone out without having to modify for each carrier.

LV23 says:

HTC highend phones are too expensive...

Maybe they should lower the profit margin for phones like One X.
You cannot expect to have a high rate of sales when your phones have the same price as Samsung highend phones... Lower your prices and for sure there you be more customers.

Also, there is the need of a HTC Nexus phone. This would be a good ad for the company.

I would like to buy a HTC Nexus phone but at reasonable price :)

GoldLeader says:

HTC should look at why they are losing existing customers. It's not because of techie reasons like Sense, or SD cards.
When I first bought my Thunderbolt, the thing was massively buggy.
Randomly rebooting, sending text messages to the wrong person, having text notifications get stuck on, having old draft text keep redisplayng every time you make a new text, having apps and the Sense launcher randomly crash and reload to an HTC screen, having long stretches of no data connectivity, having phone get stuck with wrong notification sound, having loading screen thunder clap play at random volume level when you don't want to make noise, having button backlighting get stuck off after charging the phone on the docking station, having the screen freeze and the home button stop working... The battery life was completely wretched with Froyo.
Some of these things may have turned customers away from EVER buying another HTC phone. You can fool someone into buying a lemon one time, but not a second time.
They should have spent a little more time ensuring a quality product that can last a day without dying or crashing. My phone has been great since the Gingerbread update and installing a larger Rezound battery, but was really poor for the first several months.

dpjordan75 says:

I'm not sure what your smoking? HTC phones are leaps and bounds better than Samsung's cheap plastic phones. Besides that touch wiz is garbage compared to sense.

21plays says:

appears to be the same stuff you're smoking

garciaop says:

i had htc mogul which i tough it was awsome by that time cause i was able to tether my computer for free, then i got the touch pro and it was ok but i had to carry many batteries and then it use to freeze a lot then it came touch pro 2 which i got it but then sold it cause it was really not good anymore some how it was not that good so i went to get the palm pre which had the best os but the worst advertising , the i g came back to htc and got my first android (evo 4g ) it was amazing but some how i missed my palm pre so i went back to palm pre and sold the evo 4g but after some days i kind of started the big screen and all the apps of evo 4g so i went back to evo 4g then upgraded to evo 3d then i got my first samsung phone the gs2 while i waitted for the next htc evo high end device when i first saw the evo 4g lte i was thing on getting it until i saw that i was no gonna be able to use a spare battery and then came gs3 which is awesome and i like it a lot but guess what am waitting for the galaxy note 2 to arrive on sprint

youngrony says:

UGH, I really hate to see this. As a #1 Android fan and a #1 HTC hardware fan this really hurts to look at and read. Reason being is I love Android, but I'm not to fond of Samsung, Samsung to me, just looks like they're trying to make a better iPhone, with their huge home button, their plain software look, etc etc. All they're really adding to me is a bigger screen and all the cool customization that Android provide. Don't get me wrong, I do want Android to be better than iPhone(apple iOS) but not in a similar way. HTC on the other hand just always comes out with a cleaver new way to amaze me, without me saying, that's just like the iPhone. Both hardware and what they do with their android software(sense). With that being said, one REALLY BIG lost to HTC is the Nexus brand, this really might be the cause of the drops in percentage in profits. And just look who laps Nexus fell into, Samsung.

P.S. Man I really miss my Nexus one, hope all goes well HTC

Dre89 says:

Just a thought but it might have to do with them only releasing a few devices this year as opposed to last year as well as Samsung continuing to release a new device every 2 weeks.

Last year they were neck and neck with Samsung on device releases where as this year they've put out pretty much the One line and not much else. Samsung on the other hand has kept with what's been working for Android OEMs and has still been saturating the market even with the S3 as the flagship.

Those are just my thoughts on it.