HTC Caught on Wrong Foot as SmartPhne Market Shifts Focus to Low / Mid End Phones

HTC Mobile OneHTC is caught on the wrong foot due to the decelerating growth of the high-end smartphone market and HTC’s weak position in the mid-low-end market. HTC is still facing structural challenges from smartphone demand polarization and commodization. Competition could be more intense when high-end makers put more emphasis on mid/low-end products, and low-end makers seek for product upgrades.

HTC’s over-concentration on the new One model (other models are weaker than expected in terms of shipments) could cause high earnings risk for HTC. Now we believe that the risk could come earlier than expected as – high-end smartphone growth is decelerating recently, which will put HTC in a weak position as its product mix highly (more…)

HTC – SmartPhones & Headwinds in Sales

HTC Mobile to Face HeadwindsHTC, Manufacturer of the World’s Best SmartPhne HTC One is seeing some headwinds as the momentum for HTC One has slowed and expect its June sales to decline by double digit MoM. We believe the market is overly optimistic about HTC One, ignoring the mature high-end market and Samsung’s aggressive marketing. Although HTC plans to launch several new models, such as the Butterfly, the HTC One mini and another mid-end phone, we believe none of them offer much attraction (price or product differentiation) to carriers.

From 2009-2012, consumers[US & Europe] were chasing smartphone (more…)

Nokia wins injunction against HTC One in MicroPhone Case

The Amsterdam District Court has granted Nokia’s request for a preliminary injunction against HTC regarding the microphone technology that HTC uses in its current flagship model, the new HTC One.

Nokia claims the microphone components were invented by and manufactured exclusively for Nokia. HTC said in an official statement “HTC is disappointed in the decision. We are considering whether it will have any impact on our business and we will explore alternative solutions immediately. (more…)

HTC One (M7) Competing Galaxy S3 and iPhone 5

HTC-One-97HTC launched its new flagship model “One” (previously known as M7) on 19 February. Compared with ‘Butterfly’, One features a smaller size screen (4.7-inch, versus 5″), more powerful AP (1.7 GHz quad core, versus 1.5 GHz), higher resolution (468 ppi, versus 441 ppi), metallic feeling (aluminium unibody casing, versus polycarbonate), better sound quality (dual front-facing speaker-box) and bigger battery capacity (2,300 mAh, versus 2,020 mAh). Weight/thickness are similar to Butterfly.

It has an impressive HD voice (positive for AAC). Its “ultrapixel” camera seems to deliver decent picture quality, but it remains debatable if this is as good as the 13 MP found in most flagship models. The aluminium unibody design makes the device a bit warmer than others, which mostly used polycarbonate casings. We believe the 4MP large pixel sensor allows HTC One to have better picture quality in low light environment and much better shutter speed. The lower resolution is unlikely to hurt the image quality as the human eye won’t be able to detect the difference between 4MP and 8MP on a 5 inch screen.

The new HTC “One” is a decent product, competition could remain intense in 2Q13, as most flagship models have a similar design (FHD, thinner design, and customised camera functions). With iPhone 5 demand continuing to be weak, we think HTC One has a chance to achieve decent volume if HTC can solve the yield rate problem of its camera (OIS, Optical Image Stabilizer) and come out with the right marketing message. However, we believe HTC’s problem lies more with its marketing muscle than its product.