Sat, May 05, 2018 - Page 12 News List

HTC sales still down before launch

By Ted Chen  /  Staff reporter

Pedestrians are reflected in the windows of an HTC store in Taipei on Jan. 24.

Photo: Bloomberg

HTC Corp (宏達電) has seen a continued decline in top-line figures as it gears up to launch its latest flagship smartphone later this month.

The company yesterday reported that sales last month fell 24.18 percent monthly and 55.47 percent annually to NT$2.1 billion (US$70.7 million), the poorest showing in 13 years.

It was also the third consecutive month in which sales dipped to less than NT$3 billion, with cumulative sales in the first four months of this year dropping 43.42 percent from a year earlier to NT$10.89 billion.

While several rivals in the Android camp introduced their flagship smartphones for this year last quarter, HTC is expected to address its absence in the premium segment with a refresh of its U series of handsets at a launch on May 23.

A close inspection of HTC’s invitation to the event reveals four camera modules laid out among a collection of smartphone internals, in line with leaks and rumors about the HTC U12+.

The launch of the U12+ follows the completion of a US$1.1 billion sale of HTC’s smartphone design division to Google.

Several technology news Web sites have said the U12+ is expected to feature a 6-inch screen with an 18:9 aspect ratio, 12 and 16-megapixel cameras on the back, a dual 8-megapixel camera on the front and “Edge Sense,” which would allow users to squeeze the smartphone to activate features such as the camera or open apps.

The handset, which is likely to be powered by Qualcomm Inc’s Snapdragon 845 processor, is expected to have a 128GB version that would retail for NT$24,900, the sites said.

HTC shares yesterday gained 0.69 percent in Taipei trading, outperforming the TAIEX, which rose 0.14 percent to close at 10,529.37 points, as investors warmed to the upcoming flagship, market observers said.

Separately, HTC said that it is working on improving regulatory compliance in the US after receiving a warning from the US Federal Trade Commission on April 10.

The agency voiced concerns about the language used in several companies’ warranty policies, as they stipulate that consumers must use specific parts or service providers to maintain their warranties, which is prohibited under the US’ Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act.

It has requested that each company review promotional and warranty material on their Web sites, saying in a statement that failure to redress the potential infractions within 30 days could result in legal action.

Asustek Computer Inc (華碩) also received a warning from the agency, along with Sony Corp, Microsoft Corp, Nintendo Co and Hyundai Motor Co.

Additional reporting by CNA

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