Taiwan smartphone maker HTC is making a cut of the most painful kind — by slicing 20 percent of its workforce. The decision to swallow the bitter pill comes in the wake of heavy losses and strong competition.
Google is flexing its muscles in the hardware business with the acquisition of a team of hardware talents from HTC.
The move marks another milestone in a decade-long relationship between the two companies.
“These future fellow Googlers are amazing folks we’ve already been working with closely on the Pixel smartphone line, and we’re excited to see what we can do together as one team. The deal also includes a non-exclusive license for HTC intellectual property,” blogged Rick Osterloh, Senior Vice President of Hardware at Google.
Huawei continues to retain resilience in a crowded and competitive global economic environment, aiming to become the top global smartphone vendor in five years’ time, according to ABI Research.
Its successive year-on-year rises in smartphone shipments particularly impressive, as Huawei managed to achieve its high ranking without effectively breaking out of its home market. To become a global electronics brand, the company will need to gain a strong foothold in the US and western European markets, but runs the risk of falling victim to the same plights as its larger competitors.
“Ranking by volume as third largest global smartphone vendor, Huawei is attempting to expand its reach by creating its own chipsets and mobile operating system based on Android. It may succeed with chipsets, but many other competitors tried similar OS development tactics in the past to no avail. It will be tough for Huawei to achieve this goal, even with improved global brand strength and volume gains,” said David McQueen, Research Director of ABI Research.
Rising demand for mobile games is driving the video game market to reach US$80 billion in 2020, up from under US$70 billion last year, according to ABI Research.
Traditional PC and console segments, on the other hand, will see a one- to two-percent annual growth.
Triple-A titles have the potential to dramatically change a developer/publisher’s financials, but gaming’s long tail is equally important to the continued growth of the industry. This is particularly true in the mobile space where a hit title can catapult a mobile game developer into the upper echelons of the market — as was true for developers such as King Digital (Candy Crush Saga) and Supercell (Clash of Clans).
Smartphone shipment in India observed its first drop in Q4, according to IDC. The decline was attributed to a high channel inventory at the beginning of the quarter among general trade which in turn was caused by the surge witnessed in online sales during festive season.
Q4 was seen as a correction phase when the Smart Phone market shrank by four percent while the feature phone market plummeted by about 14 percent over the previous quarter. The overall mobile phone market stood at 64.3 million units in Q4, which reflects a sequential drop of 11 percent over Q3 and an annual drop of five percent in 2014.
The feature phone to smartphone migration trend is clearly visible as smartphones formed a healthy 35 percent of the overall mobile business in Q4, an increase of 13 percent fom a year ago.
With a 5MP front-facing wide-angle camera and auto self-timer, the newly-introduced HTC One E8 is designed for selfies. On the other side is a 13MP rear-facing camera.
The stylish HTC One (E8) with its elegant dual curve design also comes with new materials, Motion Launch and HTC BoomSound. A five-inch device features a full HD, borderless display for a cleaner viewing experience.
“The HTC One (M8) had set a new smartphone standard and now we’re taking it in another exciting direction. Combining style and substance, the HTC One (E8) represents the incredible experience people expect from a HTC One device, with a look and feel that’s unlike anything else out there today. If you’re looking for the best flagship smartphone experience and want to stand out from the crowd, this is the phone for you,” said Jack Yang, President of HTC South Asia.
The HTC One mini 2, the latest member of the HTC One family, isn’t exactly a mini with its 4.5-inch display, which is 0.2-inch bigger than its previous version.
Screen size aside, the smartphone does offer quite load of features — HTC Sense 6 with HTC BlinkFeed, 5MP front-facing camera and HTC BoomSound technology — clad in a smoothly curved back and brushed Gunmetal Gray finish casing.
The HTC One mini 2 will be available in Asia in Gunmetal Gray, Glacial Silver and Amber Gold from June.
HTC has unveiled the HTC Desire 310, which packs a powerful quad-core processor and some of the features of the HTC One series but is more affordable.
Boasting a 1.3GHz quad-core processor, the smartphone can deliver fast, responsive web browsing, silky-smooth graphics when watching videos or playing games and the ability to switch between multiple apps.
“The latest addition to our renowned HTC Desire range combines super-fast processing and premium features at a lower price, offering users the best possible experience in this category,” said Peter Chou, CEO of HTC.
HTC has unveiled the first model in its 2014 mid-range portfolio — the HTC Desire 816, which packs an advanced feature set that makes it one of the better value smartphones.
The first edition of the new-look HTC Desire family comes fully loaded with HTC’s iconic dual-frontal speakers and HTC BoomSound, while HTC BlinkFeed keeps users up-to-date with the latest news and social updates on the 5.5-inch screen. A 13MP rear-facing camera complete with HTC Zoe and automatic highlight videos, as well as a 5MP front-facing camera, make it ideal for capturing both selfie and landscapes.
The new smartphone is powered by a quad-core, 1.6 GHz processor and offers 4G LTE connectivity.
The HTC One has gotten a bigger brother — the 5.9-inch HTC One max. Just like the recently launched Apple iPhone 5S, the new smartphone has a fingerprint scan feature. Located on the back of the device, the fingerprint scanner allows users to lock or unlock the screen and quickly launch up to three favourite applications by assigning an individual finger to each.
With a larger and full HD1080p display, users can better enjoy photos, videos and movies. Driving the smartphone is the quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 processor featuring a quad-core 1.7 GHz CPU.
The 16GB or 32GB onboard memory can be expanded with the microSD card slot, and with up to 65GB of Google Drive storage free for two years offered to HTC One max owners. Continue reading “HTC One upsized”
The ANZ mobile phone market has dropped by five percent quarter-over-quarter and over 20 percent year-over-year, according to IDC.
More than 2.6 million devices were shipped in Q2, a contraction that is mainly attributed to the declining feature phone segment in which shipments fell by over 45 percent compared to last year. What was shocking was the slight decline in smartphones shipments during the period.
Despite the quarter witnessing some notable product launches such as Samsung’s flagship Galaxy S4, smartphones shipments saw a marginal fall compared to the previous quarter.