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HTC mulling low-cost phones for China market

HTC mulling low-cost phones for China market

Taipei, Oct. 22 (CNA) Taiwan's HTC Corp. said Tuesday that it plans to make smartphones priced under 1,000 Chinese yuan (US$164) to target the low-cost segment in China, which is crowded with Chinese handset makers. Peter Chou, chief executive officer of HTC, said at a general meeting with employees Tuesday that China is a critical market, where overall smartphone demand has reached over 100 million units per year. "We need to look upon China from a long-term perspective. We have to invest and understand the market, integrate our marketing workforce and build good relationships with our distribution partners and customers there," Chou said. "Compared with other markets, this is a special and big market, which has huge demand for the under-1,000 Chinese yuan segment. We will develop appropriate products for individual segments in China," he noted. Chou admitted that the decrease in his company's mid-range and entry-level products led to its declining share in the global market, but he said that HTC has learned a lesson. He said he expects HTC to double its share in the global high-end market next year and in the United States, thanks to the company's enhanced product portfolio and marketing strategy. Chou said he will try to avoid quality issues in HTC products, and will supervise the company's product development next year from manufacturing and components to suppliers and software. Asked by employees about any plans to outsource the company's manufacturing, Chou said manufacturing remains an important part of HTC to ensure good quality, but he added that the company will be open to seeking cooperation with other firms. The statement came after Jack Tong, president of HTC's China and North Asia operations, said Oct. 18 that the company is aiming to increase the number of its stores in China from 3,000 to 4,000 next year. HTC Chairwoman Cher Wang said last month that she expects the company to grab a 20 percent share of China's high-end market in the future by introducing two flagship smartphones, the HTC One and Butterfly series. In an Oct. 4 survey released by research firm Avanti, HTC held only a 6.8 percent share in the world's largest smartphone market when the respondents were asked to identify their most-used smartphone brand, lagging behind local vendors Huawei Technologies Co. (8 percent) and Xiaomi Technology (7.1 percent). Samsung Electronics Co. of South Korea had the highest share of 21.5 percent in the poll, which surveyed 3,272 Chinese consumers, while Apple Inc. came in second with 8.8 percent and Nokia Oyj ranked third with 8.2 percent. (By Jeffrey Wu)


Updated : 2021-01-24 11:55 GMT+08:00