HTC helped Google kick off the Nexus program all those years ago (it really does feel like a long time ago), and for a lot of people it’s basically just been about waiting for HTC to make another one. Not that the other Nexus-branded smartphones that have launched since have been terrible, or even bad, but they haven’t been made by HTC and some people are just waiting for it to come around again.
This year, it looks like we’re getting part of our wish this time around. While it’s readily believed that Motorola has been tapped to be the next manufacturer to bring a smartphone to market with the Nexus branding on the back (though, admittedly, their effort is going be big enough that some people will call it a tablet, too), HTC is still rumored to be in the Nexus party this year.
Their device will be the Nexus 9, according to the rumors, and if the image that leaked to the surface of the news cycle earlier on Monday, October 6, is any indicator, it’ll be a nice looking tablet when it lands on the market. Whenever that happens to be. But, I basically had one question when I saw the Nexus 9 this morning:
A tablet is not inherently a bad idea, of course. But, HTC is a company that is still looking to make sure they have a sure footing heading into the future. A company that has had a couple of amazing smartphones released to market in just as many years, but is still looking for that huge hit to catapult them back into the Android Army’s leading ranks. I don’t see a tablet doing that in general, and definitely not a Nexus tablet.
It isn’t a secret that whether or not a company ever launches it, they’re definitely playing around with plenty of different ideas. From smartwatches to tablets, to whatever else tickles their fancy, it’s an idea that they’ve tossed around and conceptualized probably more than a few times, so it’s not like a tablet is going to impact their view of the future or with their smartphones.
With that being said, I just can’t picture a moment where I think HTC will see a big boost, the boost they’re looking for, because of an Android-powered tablet. And, again, definitely not when it comes to a Nexus-branded tablet, which is still a device aimed for a very specific market. Whether or not HTC markets their new tablet, if it does indeed launch, is almost a nonissue because when Google advertises it, they’ll be doing so with their services at the forefront, and the device itself as merely an afterthought. (I’ve seen so many Android Wear and Google Now commercials, where the software is obviously the selling point, and whatever’s running it doesn’t really matter. I could easily see this being the same case for an HTC-branded Nexus tablet.)
Of course it’s possible that HTC makes a smash-hit tablet, and word of mouth gets around that everyone should buy this amazing piece of hardware, and so everyone does and HTC wins over the hearts of millions again. It’s definitely possible. But, I guess I’m just being cautious here when I temper my excitement for a brand new, 9-inch tablet from HTC. I just can’t help but wonder what the overall point is.
Unless the point is just to release it because they can. If that is the case, well, more power to you, HTC.