For the past few years, HTC has been in a gulf-sized hole and many would argue it was a self-inflicted wound. In hopes of retaining its approach as a viable contender in the Android world, HTC's latest jab against competitors comes in the form of the One. The One has been labeled as the Taiwanese company's "last effort" to get itself out of said rut. It's a Hail Mary smartphone for the company. And, honestly, it's looking more possible for the company to rejuvenate itself with each passing day.
The verdict is in for HTC's latest flagship and the grass is looking a bit greener for the company. Our own Aaron Baker praised the One's build quality and fit and finish, complimenting the loud BoomSound speakers, and vivid 1080p display. In other words, the features of HTC's latest flagship are selling themselves. HTC can and should breathe a sigh of relief.
With all things considered, HTC is in a great position to rival the next iPhone, and the reigning King of Android - Samsung's Galaxy S 4. The One is undoubtedly the Taiwanese company's most prolific smartphone creation to date.
It's a fight long overdue for the two Asian manufacturers. Where Samsung has managed to capitalize on its Galaxy brand, HTC is differentiating itself as the definition of a high quality Android experience. And it's working among tech pundits. It's also getting noticed by investors.
The Wall Street Journal reported that HTC Corp. "actually beat some investors' expectations" with the company trading 3.1 percent up in the Taipei trading floor on the previous day. It's a startling break for the company since HTC announced their first-quarter net profit was down 98 percent from a year earlier. In other words, it's the lowest level since it began selling as HTC Corp. back in 2006. A company that has managed to gather as much negative publicity as HTC should now look forward to how it will recoup its losses. The One is their answer and it's shaping up to be everything it needs to be for the Taiwanese company.
But many are quick to point at HTC's current financial situation and consider any chance of recovery laughable, which is not entirely fair because the One is not yet in the picture. HTC has been on a steady decline for the past few years with sales of their Android flagships the HTC One X and One X+ making very little difference to the company's bottom line. With that said, there was one thing missing: marketing flair. Many believe that HTC's Quietly Brilliant campaign was becoming too quiet, and I agree. I'm glad they've decided to go with a new motto even if it's taking them a while to figure it out. The One has marketable features like BlinkFeed, BoomSound, and Zoe to attract consumer attention HTC has always struggled with. Now that the HTC One is in the picture, HTC is in a better position than ever to counter the onslaught of competition.
"Over the past week, people were expecting much worse (of HTC)," Yuanta Securities analyst Dennis Chan told the Wall Street Journal. "The fact that it's still turning a profit counts as good news."
With that said, a snapshot of the stock market is never an accurate representation of a company's financial health. Just because they're trading slightly higher than yesterday, HTC should not let off. Analysts are still hesitant of HTC Corp.'s future on many fronts. There is still apprehension surrounding HTC's UltraPixel supply shortages which are unlikely to match demand until late April and early May. In other words, right when the One goes on sale. Many analysts also feel that HTC is in a position to rebound against competing devices, but only if it can meet demand.
But it's not all that surprising if you look back at what we have asked HTC to do to ensure the One is a moderate success. HTC has managed to listen to most concerns.
The HTC One has kept carrier branding minimal, and that's what we wanted. You could argue that's because Verizon isn't in the picture (yet), but the One remains mostly unmarked. HTC has also managed to position itself as something entirely different from the Galaxy S 4. Look no further than HTC's official Twitter handle @HTC as proof of their zealousness. I believe it's important HTC solidifies its presence as a different Android experience because Samsung has clearly cornered a portion of the market with white knuckled grasp. Lastly, the HTC One is so very fresh and new compared to any other smartphone they've ever made. HTC listened to everyone who wanted something brand new, and they delivered. There's no question they have gone all-in with their latest handset.
To top it off, many analysts believe this is rock bottom for HTC, and that the One can (and will) allow the company to breathe a sigh of relief knowing that it can't get any worse.
We'll just have to wait and see if HTC can keep up with demand.
Image via Gadgethelpline.