Poor HTC. The Taiwanese firm just can’t seem to catch a break right now. Preliminary Q2 results in July predicted its business would return to the red, and, now those loses are confirmed with the quarter’s official figures, the company is preparing to “streamline” its business significantly and put out phones that people will actually want to buy. The company recorded a NT$8 billion(US$252 million) operating loss for Q2 2015 on revenue of NT$33.0 billion (US$1,042 billion). In a frank call with analysts, HTC CFO and president of global sales Chialin Chang admitted that sales were weak because consumers “prefer more fashionable phones” to those which HTC offers.
That’s not a huge surprise for as we, and others have said, its current flagship — the One M9 — is impressive but not particularly different to its predecessor, which didn’t sell well. The company, which suffered last quarter with disappointing sales in China — where the smartphone market is shrinking and Huawei and Xiaomi’s affordable devices hoovering up market share — is planning to release new devices before the end of the year as it hones in on profitability rather than market share, Chang said.
HTC’s CFO confirmed that “a classic version” of the company’s flagship One M9 that’s more “trendy” is in the pipeline, alongside another model(s) with differentiated features. Don’t expect top-of-the-line releases, however. Chang said the new launches will “address premium segments” but will be a few tiers down from flagship. (That sounds to us like the Xiaomi-Huawei $300-500 range, but HTC isn’t giving more details for now.)