Text size:

  • Small
  • Normal
  • Large

HTC's launches new smartphone with revamped Android software

Taiwan's HTC Corp has unveiled the new smartphone that it hopes will set it apart from the crowd of Google Android devices on the market.

Taiwan's HTC has unveiled the new smartphone that it hopes will set it apart from the crowd of Google Android devices on the market and help it make up ground lost to Samsung and Apple.

It has distinguished the phone, the HTC One, from rival Android devices by using new software the BlinkFeed feature to replace icons on the home screen with a personalised stream of news articles, social networking updates, photos and video.

HTC is also billing it as the first smartphone with a built-in remote control function, opening a window into a potential new business model for phone vendors and cable TV operators.

HTC is in discussions with cable operators in different countries, and hopes to offer a more interactive package for consumers by transforming the phone into a remote control for TVs, set-top boxes and receivers, according to analysts who attended a conference with HTC on Tuesday. The company declined to comment on whether it was in talks.

"The new TV connectivity feature inspires new imagination regarding how the smartphone and TV space may evolve," said CK Lu, an analyst for Gartner based in Taipei. "It allows for deep collaboration," he said.

Possibilities include co-developing apps and bundle-selling by smartphone makers and cable operators, Mr Lu said, which would expand sales channels.

HTC was an early, and successful, maker of smartphones based on Android, but it has been eclipsed by the increasing dominance of Samsung, which Gartner said made more than 42 per cent of Android smartphones in the fourth quarter.

Android is widening its lead in smartphone operating systems, with devices running the software capturing nearly 70 per cent of the market last quarter, Gartner said last week.

Apple is in second place with 21 per cent, while BlackBerry and Windows Phone, which Nokia is pinning its hopes on, trailed with 3.5 per cent and 3 per cent, respectively.

HTC, however, has failed to capitalise on Android's dominance. Its share of mobile phone sales fell to 1.8 per cent of the market last year, down from 2.4 per cent in 2011, according to Gartner, and delivered disappointing first-quarter sales guidance early this month after reporting a 91 per cent plunge in fourth-quarter net profit.

HTC launched its new device, which features a 4.7 inch screen and quad-core processor, days before the mobile phone industry's biggest gathering in Barcelona.

Analysts said that the new smartphone would help HTC to differentiate its brand from the typical Android offering but that competition from Samsung remained the biggest threat.

"HTC One is the best Android smartphone for the time being, but consumers will wait till they see Galaxy 4S, which is expected to launch in mid-March, to decide to buy or not," said Birdy Lu, an analyst at Daiwa Capital in Taipei.

HTC said the device would be available in more than 80 countries from March.

Back to the top

More articles

Editor's Picks

 The Greens, villas: Q1 no change. 3BR - Dh210-250,000. 4BR - Dh210-260,000. 5BR - Dh220-300,000. Q1 2013-Q1 2014 5% rise. Pawan Singh / The National

In pictures: Where Dubai rents have risen and fallen, Q1 2014

Find out how rental prices in the prime locations in Dubai have altered during the first three months of the year and the current rates you will pay according to data provided by Asteco.

 Miele coffee maker making Cappuccino at Miele Gallery in Sama Tower in Dubai. The cost of this coffee maker is around Dh 17,000. Pawan Singh / The National

Space-age coffee comes at a price from Miele

Miele have taken the coffee machine to a new level with its Dh17,000 offering that is built into your kitchen.

 The bridge of Seajacks Hydra, as the wind farm installation vessel undergoes finishing touches and testing works at Lamprell’s Hamriyah facility in Sharjah before its planned delivery on June 2, 2014. Jeffrey E Biteng / The National

In pictures: Building the Seajacks Hydra

The Seajacks Hydra, a wind farm installation vessel, is undergoing finishing touches and testing works at Lamprell’s Hamriyah facility in Sharjah before its planned delivery on June 2, 2014.

 The Wind, Energy, Technology and Environment Exhibition takes place from April 14 to April 16. Above, the Dewa showroom during last year’s Wetex. Jaime Puebla / The National

April corporate and economic calendar for the UAE and overseas

From Cityscape to Wetex to stock-market holidays to nations reporting first-quarter GDP figures, here is our helpful calendar of April's business events in the UAE and internationally.

 The rush of new supply of hotel rooms pushed Dubai occupancy rates down to 87 per cent. Sarah Dea / The National

Dubai hotel room rates rise 10 per cent

The rush of new supply pushed occupancy rates down to 87 per cent, a dip of 2.6 per cent from the previous year. Winter months are the strongest for Dubai hotels, with occupancy and prices falling to half their peaks by July.

 Get the latest information on credit cards, bank accounts and loan products in the UAE. Mark Lennihan / AP Photo

Rates report: Latest on UAE loans, accounts and credit cards

Souqamal.com brings you the latest interest rates on banking products in the UAE.


To add your event to The National listings, click here

Get the most from The National