Oh noes! My favorite manufacturer, HTC is in trouble…again. The numbers for the third quarter are in and it’s not looking so good for the Taiwanese titan. They made $2.4 Billion in revenue in the third quarter, which seems like a lot, but is actually 48% from the same time last year and 23% from the second quarter of this year. Operating profit was $167 Million, which down 76% from 2011 and operating expenses were $431 Million, which were down 29% from 2011 as well. Despite decent sales with their less-is-more strategy on the One series, they still took a real beating.
Why is this? Have Samsung and iFail phone sales dominated so much that people have forgotten who HTC is? Does the aura of poor build quality and bad decisions still haunt them from devices like the EVO 3D? Do consumers still have a bad taste in their mouths because of HTC’s half-way-there bootloader unlock with HTCdev unlock? Or does HTC just make devices that nobody wants to buy? What do you think?
I’m no expert, but here’s my take. HTC hit a home run with OG EVO, it was the first Android phone that could really take on the iPhone. It was also easily S-OFF’ed and dev adoption was rampant. Then HTC had a change of heart and decided to change things, locking Hboots every chance they could with no S-OFF in sight; whenever an exploit was found, they’d patch it up with a new update and unlockable Hboot. The EVO 3D suffered a mass exodus of users because the 1.5 Hboot was locked out of S-OFF for so long. There was even a time when HTC wanted to lock all bootloaders. We had to petition for them to open them again, resulting in HTCdev unlock, which was a weak attempt to appease rooters again. Nowadays devs have to do the hokey pokey while juggling swords to get S-OFF. I can count among my OG EVO rooted brethren that I know about six dozen at least, who jumped to the SGSII (and have dumped HTC entirely since) after HTC started with their bootloader shenanigans. If HTC wants to succeed, they should continue to make devices with the look and quality of the One line, they should really de-Sense Sense and make it just a launcher, they should make it easy to S-OFF any device, and they should release even less devices than they do now so they can focus on multi-carrier devices with better specs. Here’s to 2013.