HTC to make Nexus phones: 6 things to expect
TrendForce, a market analysis firm, said in a press release last Thursday that while HTC continues to suffer drop in smartphone sales, its fellow Taiwanese phone maker ASUS has recorded an increase of 34 per cent in smartphone production. While ASUS will set to produce 21.5 million units in the entire year, HTC will produce only 13 million units, out of which just one million units will be HTC 10 handsets. HTC produced around 18 million phones last year and the year-on-year drop in smartphone production will be an alarming 26.8 per cent.
Fortunately, HTC is also resting its hopes on the Vive Virtual Reality system which has performed admirably so far. According to Steam data, the company has sold over 100,000 units of the Vive VR system in less than three months after it was launched. In comparison, Oculus has sold only 175,000 Rift development kits between August 2012 and October of last year.
HTC's smartphone production may also go up later this year after it receives manufacturing contracts from Google to produce the next-generation Nexus phones. HTC's success entirely depends on how phone buyers from across the world will react to the upcoming Nexus phone's design and capabilities. As per TrendForce, the company needs to produce at least 40 million phones in the calendar year, but going by existing estimates, the company is struggling to sell even half as many, despite launching several mid-range phones recently.
This is the HTC 10: Specs and features
Even though HTC 10 is a highly capable phone featuring Qualcomm's latest Snapdragon 820 SoC, HTC introduced the phone with an inferior Snapdragon 652 SoC in China to sell the phone at a lower price point. However, Chinese phone buyers weren't too impressed with the move and wanted to buy HTC 10s featuring the latest Qualcomm chip, leading to just 251 pre-orders for the phone in the first eleven days since it was launched in China. The loss of sales may surely have contributed to the company's poor performance in the period since HTC 10 was launched.
With HTC expected to manufacture flagship Nexus phones later this year running Android Nougat, the company will have a chance to recover from the persistent decline in smartphone sales by the end of the year. If it doesn't, then its fortunes will depend on either the Vive VR headset or HTC 11 which may launch early next year.