HTC was the first smartphone maker to use Google’s Android mobile operating system on its devices. However, over the past few years, HTC devices have taken a tough beating from the market culminating in significant declines in market share owing to the rise of other players such as Samsung, Huawei and Apple. Its devices are mainly mid-range and high-end, two segment where Samsung, Apple and new entrants such as Xiaomi have stranglehold.
In addition,the Taiwanese company has also been making quarterly losses for as long as I can remember and it does not seem keen on stopping the bleeding. Part of the previous losses have been attributed to management and insider issues rocking the company as well as the not so significant marketing budget. In March 2015, long serving CEO Peter Chou, responsible for the turbulence was replaced by HTC chairperson Cher Wang and instead moved to a new role as the head of the “HTC Future Development Lab”. Still these changes did not stop the annihilation with HTC reportedly making a quarterly loss five times more than analysts’ estimates blamed on plummeting smartphone sales.
More bad news is that HTC has now been dropped from the Taiwan Stock Exchange main stock Index called TWSE Taiwan 50 Index. The index tracks the performance of 50 highly valued Taiwanese blue chip stocks, that represent 70% of the country’s stock market activity. The drop comes shortly after the HTC announced plans to slash its workforce by 2,000 jobs representing 15% of its entire workforce. Even with the drop, HTC continues to launch new products including the recently launching the Desire 728 in China. There also exciting products lined up including a fitness tracker called Grip as well as virtual reality headset called Vive. HTC’s stock has taken a 66% beating this year.