TIME HTC

HTC’s New Plan: More Cheap Phones

HTC says it focused too much on its flagship One. Uh oh.

In 2013, HTC put out its smallest product lineup ever, but also created its best product ever, the HTC One.

Hopefully those two points aren’t related, because 2014 is going to be different. According to Reuters, HTC will still produce high-end devices, but will also pump out more mid-tier and low-cost smartphones:

“The problem with us last year was we only concentrated on our flagship. We missed a huge chunk of the mid-tier market,” said co-founder and Chairwoman Cher Wang, speaking to Reuters in New York last week alongside Chialin Chang, HTC’s ‎Chief Financial Officer.

In fairness, HTC had a dismal year that included the company’s first ever quarterly loss. The idea of putting lots of effort behind a single, killer phone didn’t work out, though HTC also admits that it could have done a better job at marketing. (I also think HTC faltered with the One’s inferior flagship siblings, the One Mini and One Max.)

If a higher volume of cheaper phones help HTC live to stay in the high-end phone business, that’d be fantastic. But spreading the focus around to lots of other phones can dull an entire product line. Just ask the 2012 version of HTC.

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