HTC has floated the possibility of using RIM’s operating system as the manufacturer readies new Android and Windows Phone devices for the coming months.
BlackBerry manufacturer RIM is expected to license out its own operating system as it bids to turn its business around. When asked if the company would release devices carrying the OS, Graham Wheeler, director of product management for EMEA at HTC, said: ‘I don’t have any knowledge but that is not to say we are not looking at it. But from my point of view we are not saying we are closed to a new operating system. We will review each one to make sure it’s the best for our customers.’
The Taiwanese company announced its mid-tier Desire X last week, which will launch later this month. Wheeler said the handset is ‘the best all-rounder’ and will sit below the One series’ portfolio of ‘superphones’, along with HTC’s Desire C. He added: ‘It’s for people who want to be connected and are very active in social networking. They want a good phone that offers performance and works incredibly well when they want it. It’s for a younger market but it is not just a young person’s phone.’ Wheeler said he expected the phone to be sold on ‘low priced monthly tariffs’. Phones 4u will offer the device on tariffs starting from £20.50 per month.
The manufacturer is widely expected to launch a phone running Microsoft’s forthcoming Windows Phone 8 OS in the coming months. Wheeler refused to confirm any future product launches, but added: ‘Windows Phone 8 is an incredibly exciting operating system. The ecosystem it has will lead us to create great products.’
Like RIM, HTC is attempting to reverse its fortunes, with the manufacturer expecting its third quarter sales to drop to NT$70bn. HTC CEO Peter Chou issued an email to staff last month which said the company needed to kill bureaucracy amid a declining market share. He said: ‘Stay firm with the hero innovations and make them even bigger and deliver them.’
Wheeler claimed he was ‘incredibly happy’ with sales of the One series, seen as the centrepiece of HTC’s fightback strategy, and said the company ‘was not putting its head in the sand’ regarding its performance. He added: ‘It’s all about making great products. That’s the most important thing. That’s what consumers want. We think we do create great products and we will continue with our focus on that. That’s our number one strategy.’
Wheeler also confirmed that HTC would continue its relationship with Beats Audio amid speculation that their partnership would come to an end after the manufacturer sold half of its stake in the firm. He said: ‘Despite what has been written, there is absolutely no change in our relationship. We are still working on the integration of their products with our devices.’
Editor: Graeme Neill