January 6, 2012 | by Andrew Kameka
HTC two-year long streak of growth has ended as it reported a dip in sales for the first time since Android-powered phones propelled the company high profits. In the fourth quarter of 2011, HTC had NT$101,419 million, a decrease of 2.49% in comparison to the same period last year.
Since 2008, HTC has seen several quarters with record sales thanks to the company’s pole position among Android manufacturers. But the popularity of the iPhone 4S and increased competition from Samsung and other Android phone makers led to a decline in sales in the latter half of 2011.
Samsung had more reason to smile in its latest financial reports. The Korean manufacturer declared that its smartphone sales reached 35 million in Q4 2011, up from 28 million in Q3 2011. The record high performance contributed to making Samsung the top smartphone maker in terms of volume, at least according to estimates published in Reuters.
So what explains these numbers? In HTC’s case, the company released some duds this year (Salsa in particular) and had a large, incredibly diverse line of products. However, it lacked a massive global seller like Samsung’s range of Galaxy S II phones. Both companies produce devices running other operating systems – HTC on Windows Phone 7, Samsung on Bada – but they live and die by how well their Android phones perform.
HTC will look to re-spark its momentum by focusing on key high-end products that will better compete with Apple and Samsung. In November of 2011, CFO Winston Yung had this to say about the company’s upcoming plans:
“We will focus on the product next year, better and more competitive. Other than new LTE phones for the U.S. market, we have phones for the global market. We will launch some worldwide flagship products. We’re confident in them.”