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Now that we’re two days into February, it’s time to start looking ahead. We’ve spent the last couple of days talking about BlackBerry’s new BlackBerry 10 mobile operating system, along with its hardware, and even why you might switch platforms. But today it’s time to switch gears a bit, and put our focus on another company. Another company that, while perhaps not as desperate as BlackBerry’s situation, is indeed facing a long trial of tribulations. So, Dear Reader, let’s talk HTC.

The truth is, there is no doubt in my mind that HTC is the company that can still make an impact in the smartphone industry. HTC is a company that still makes solid hardware, devices that are truly worth owning, worth staring at. Even if I don’t necessary like using the HTC One X (or One X+), I can’t help but stare at it when I see it. It’s a nice looking phone, and it feels great in the hand.

And Microsoft was in the right when they put a lot of the marketing muscle behind HTC’s Windows Phone 8X. I thought it was confusing at first, sure, but that’s only because of the situation between Microsoft and Nokia. After getting my hands on the Windows Phone 8X, though, it’s clear that HTC has created, yet again, a truly remarkable device.

Until yesterday, despite the numerous leaks and rumors churned out of the Rumor Mill, the M7 was just another unannounced device that may, or may not, exist. And then, yesterday, Chou took the stage at HTC’s year-end party, and showed the device off to the crowd. Eventually they were all cheering “M7!” and I’m pretty sure that effectively churned up quite a bit of awareness for the phone’s existence.

The CEO admitted the phone is real. That’s practically the same thing as a launch event, with even fewer details than we’re used to getting.

Of course, HTC has a real launch date planned for their new device, which is February 19. Everyone expects to see HTC’s next great flagship device on that day, and I for one am pretty excited to see this phone in action. The question is, which I hinted at earlier, will it matter? Even if the M7 is a killer phone, will it be enough to “save” HTC? To bring them back, like a roaring Phoenix? Or are we going to be looking at another piece of hardware that’s weighted down by the software limitations or drawbacks?

We are in agreement that it has to be the software, right? Because we’ll admit that the One X+ and Windows Phone 8x are fantastic pieces of hardware. Whether it’s an aged Sense UI, or Windows Phone 8, something on the softer side of things is keeping these phones from really taking off.

You know what else would help, though? If HTC would start listening to itself. We are only two months into 2013, and I’m already seeing HTC go back on something it said in the middle of 2012. That’s a pretty quick turn-around rate, if you ask me. And no, I’m not saying that HTC needs to stick to their plans because the consumer is paying attention to what the CEO is saying. I’m saying that HTC needs to stick to their plans because these are good plans! They should stick to them!

Instead, we get to see HTC executives say one thing, and then do the complete opposite later down the line.

In 2011, for example. HTC said that they’d be focusing on “quality over quantity" in 2012, a direct response regarding the flood of HTC-branded devices they launched in 2011. So that’s where the One series came from. The only problem is that HTC still managed to release so many devices in 2012. Many of them bearing the One series brand, or the specifications marketed to suggest it could be a One series device. So, while HTC may have focused on quality over quantity to start 2012, it didn’t stick to that plan at all.

Now, we’re essentially looking at the same situation, but with a slightly different context. In June of last year, Peter Chou told The Wall Street Journal that the company would no longer be launching low-end devices. That they’d be focusing on mid-range to high-end handsets only, to help their market share. A plan that, shocker, makes sense. Much like Sony has recently announced, HTC wants to keep their phones at a pristine level, and putting focus on lower-end handsets could divert attention away from devices that truly deserve it.

That makes sense. And since we know the HTC M7 is coming down the pipe, it would seem that HTC is sticking to their guns. But then we’ve got two more devices reportedly launching this year, and things immediately start to get shaky. Fortunately, the rumored M4 isn’t that far down the ladder from the M7. It is said to feature a 4.3-inch 720p display, a 1.2GHz dual-core processor, a 13 megapixel camera on the back, and a 1.2MP front-facing shooter. You’ll also get 2GB of RAM, 16GB of built-in storage, and 4G LTE-connectivity. All-in-all, a phone that has a few high-end features, but would fit squarely in that mid-range area without much argument.

Oh, but there’s one more. The G2. Another rumored, and not official device. (Yet.) This device will reportedly pack a 3.5-inch HVGA touchscreen display, a 1GHz processor, with a 5MP camera on the back. You’ll only get 512MB of RAM, 4GB of built-in storage, and a 1,400mAh battery. There is a microSD card slot, though, so that’s something.

HTC, the G2 is a low-end device. It’s an entry-level handset, and that goes against the statement you made in June. I’m looking at a rumored phone that, if it does indeed launch, would fly in the face of comments you made regarding your company’s plans. I’m not really understanding why this keeps happening, but it’s leaving me a little jaded about HTC’s future. I’m someone that tries to take what a CEO says seriously, because I tend to believe that they’ve got a pretty good grasp on what their company’s plans are.

The reason this bothers me, is because I can’t help but look at Peter Chou’s statements about HTC’s “worst days,” and that we should all expect a bigger marketing push from the company in 2013 for their new devices. That they’ll essentially fix it, and we’ll see the results. Unfortunately, I’m looking at the past and seeing a distinct disconnect between what’s been said and what’s been put into action. Which makes me think that 2013 won’t actually see a change in marketing, or maybe even worse marketing, for devices like the M7 and M4 that really deserve some extra attention, especially from consumers.

I want HTC to succeed. The company has been behind some of my all-time favorite devices, and I want to see that trend resurrected this year. I’m always ready to find my new phone, and I’ve been waiting for HTC to supply it. I have extremely high expectations for the M7, and I hope that HTC has put the necessary amount of attention into it. But where do you stand on HTC, Dear Reader? Do you think 2013 will be their year? Or will we see Samsung continue to rule the roost, and HTC continue to falter and lag behind? Let me know what you think.


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28 Reactions to this post

"What do you want to see in HTC's M7?"


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Michael D Newcomer Jr @Aaron with phonedog.com have u herd of these touch screen issues I speak of? And could u for the love of god tell me why they stopped letting u remove the batteries and tool away the sd card slot? Also I agree that they need to be on every carrier like u said in ur youtube video but I also think that it needs to be mentioned that people are probably not buying htc bc of the battery and there not being an sd card slot.
Michael D Newcomer Jr I stopped buying htc after I had nothing but touch screen issues with the evo line it was a nightmare dealing with sprint on this issue but I loves my htc inspire from AT&T so I guess what I would want is the screen issue to be resolved if it hasn't been already and a removable battery considering I had to remove mine ALOT when I had both the evo 4g with wimax and the evo 3D also would like tosee see and SD card slot. I really like htc sence and I would definitely buy another one if these problems were resolved
Naj Khan who is htc
Sajid Assad 5 inches 1080p else there is no point upgrading from htc one x
Samuel Ong The biggest wow would be if they included a huge ass battery! I really hope HTC will surprise us!
Michael Kergosien Jr Dennis huggenstaller is 100 percent correct.
David John Balbin sugar, spice, quad-core snapdragon processor, 4G LTE, Jelly Bean OS and everything nice.
Kevin Hatchett i second Matic Ponzic!
Lennes Shaw Whats up with the sony z or zl?
Chris May Why ask this question? The phone is done. No removable battery, 1080p sd slot, 4.7 in screen 2500 mah battery. Sense 5.0. My dna is still better
Nikola Karovic Full Tegra 4, 5ch 1080, 2gb ram,64gb flash, and sens UI cos I think that is good and useful. For others just go and buy samsung plastic crap.
Matt Uglymf Hall They shouldnt make phones period.
Cesario Brito Jr. What does it matter? They lost touch with what the consumers want.
Nick Bianco HTC is going to fail miserably unless the completely cut out sense ui.
Mike Jones White.....released on Verizon....probably wishful thinking....
Alex Arana Sd slot come on HTC with data caps cloud is not the solution
Matic Poznic 4000mAh battery,Snapdragon S4 or 800,32-64Gb internal storage,Lagg free Sense 5,Removable battery,SD storage expansion slot,A great SLCD3 with awesome viewing angles and high PPI, A great image Chip.Atleast F.2.0 aperture with better low light shots... ;D
Emanuel Ringo Sense is fine. what HTC need to do is to do something about the battery life and charge times; since besides their software (at times), this is the only thing letting them down. because it doesn't what's the point of having a fancy phone full of specs and features if you can't use it because it's out of charge? - no need of removable battery, because if u can carry a secondary battery, then u can carry around a battery-powered charger. more "mAh" is what we need!
Veanguithya Bay Phou A bigger battery preferably 4000 compacity. Removeable storage. A better camera and better intergrated software...
Chad Huneycutt At&t needs to update the one x
Kyle Cordiano They need to revamp Sense UI.
Håvard Ulsaker 1080p display, a huge battery, Nvidia Tegra 4 or Qualcom Snapdragon 600 and a fantastic design.
Jomar Lee Streeter I want it to have a very scaled back version of Sense, Android 4.2 not 4.1 (can we please start out with the latest) Also I don't want to see an HTC M7 (2) let this phone be big like the Samsung s3 is for samsung, I don't want 1,000 of M7 like devices in 2 weeks from this release. Also all carriers need to carry this like the S3... I would also like for this phone to at least be covered for 2 more android updates like how the s2 was with 4.0 and 4.1 then htc will be golden.
Fan Ren They need a better name. M7 is not a interesting name. It sounds like a random boring phone.
Miguel Placencia Buy non us HTC the butterfly has all that cept the battery
Dennis Heggenstaller Removeable battery and storage....this is why i quit buying htc crap
Miguel Placencia NO ON SCREEN BUTTONS FOR THE LOVE OF A FAKE Deity
Christopher Williams Vanilla Android, user replaceable battery, and expandable memory.




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