Smartphone manufacturer HTC has posted its Q4 2013 financial results and forecasts for Q1 2014, revealing further decline for the company.
The report published yesterday revealed a quarterly revenue of NT$42.9nm (£862m), down from NT$60bn for the same period last year, despite a slim Q4 net profit of NT$300m (£6m). Reuters reported that this means HTC has suffered 27 consecutive months of falling year-on-year revenue, which has also been echoed by an 80 per cent drop in share price.
Meanwhile for Q1 2014, HTC is forecasting a further fall to NT$34bn-$36bn, after January sales slumped by 38 per cent year-on-year.
However, HTC remains optimistic about changing its fortunes. In a press release, CEO Peter Chou revealed the company is planning on "building a compelling mid-range portfolio."
Meanwhile chairwoman Cher Wang commented:
"The problem with us last year was we only concentrated on our flagship. We missed a huge chunk of the mid-tier market."
Speaking to Reuters, HTC's chief financial officer Chialin Chang explained this new focus on the mid-range market would include lower cost smartphones in the $150-$300 price bracket, alongside its usual high-end, flagship devices at the $500-$600 mark.
HTC's current global smartphone market share is around 2 per cent as it faces competition from high-end manufacturers such as Apple and Samsung, as well as budget handsets. In 2013, Apple also attempted to crack the mid-range market with the launch of the iPhone 5C.
The new M8
The announcement comes as HTC prepares to launch its new flagship device in the next few months, a sequel to the HTC One widely believed to be called the M8. Its predecessor enjoyed positive reviews and a $12m advertising campaign starring Robert Downey Junior, but saw disappointing sales; Wang told Reuters that marketing is a key area for improvement in 2014.
Kleon West, business development director at theEword, commented: "After such prolonged decline it's high time for HTC to change tactics - and the low to mid range market does hold lots of potential. However, they will have to be careful not to diminish their USP or alienate loyal high-end consumers in the process."