HTC hopes midrange phones and better ads will save it in 2014

HTC logoReuters recently spoke to senior executives at HTC and got an idea of what the future holds for the beleaguered company. HTC is coming off a disastrous 2013, during which the company suffered from terrible marketing, the near-unprecedented flop of the HTC First Facebook phone, and low sales of its well-reviewed flagship. To add more misery, many employees quit, while others were arrested for taking kickbacks and stealing company secrets.

2014 is a new year, though, and HTC's resolution is to add some midrange phones to its lineup. HTC told Reuters, "The problem with us last year was we only concentrated on our flagship. We missed a huge chunk of the mid-tier market." The HTC One Mini immediately comes to mind as an midrange phone from HTC, but that phone sells unlocked for around $400. HTC says it won't get into the "very, very low-end market" and that the new phones will sell for around "$150 to $300."

HTC hopes midrange phones and better ads will save it in 2014

Advertising has always been a sore spot for HTC, and it admitted that its two-year, $1 billion marketing campaign with Robert Downey Jr. "didn't do well" in 2013. A spokeswoman speaking to Reuters promised a "very aggressive campaign" in 2014 that HTC hopes will reverse its fortunes. In the face of Samsung's $14 billion marketing budget in 2013, though, HTC's new ads will have to be spectacular to avoid being drowned out by that kind of marketing saturation.

At least we won't have to wait very long to see HTC's new flagship product for 2014. HTC says invitations for an event for the HTC One sequel will be sent out in about two weeks. Mobile World Congress starts in roughly the same time frame, so this suggests that the new decvice won't be announced at the show. Rumors point to the HTC One 2 doing away with the worst part of the HTC One, the logo-festooned button arrangement, as well as switching to on-screen buttons like those seen on the the Nexus 5 and Moto X.

Source: Ars Technica

Tags: HTC, smartphones

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