In a move that’s no surprise to anyone who’s been following HTC news recently, the company just announced that it’s going to cut 15% of its workforce. Some 2,250 people will lose their jobs as part of the company’s aim to cut 35% of its expenses before 2016 rolls in.
It’s no secret that HTC has been struggling over the past few years, resulting in its market value becoming virtually worthless. Once one of the ‘big guys’ in the smartphone market, the Taiwanese company now faces stiff competition and has failed to make a profit for two straight quarters. With the rise of competitively priced Chinese smartphones with impressive specifications, it’s harder for big companies like HTC to be successful at the low end of the market. With Apple dominating high-end smartphone sales, HTC and many other OEMs are left scrapping it out in the middle. This aggressive and competitive landscape has seen HTC’s smartphone market share slip from double-digits to just 2% in recent times.
The company has stated in the past that it wants to start focussing more on the higher end devices since those are the products with higher margins. It also aims to expand far beyond the smartphone industry. Its widely acclaimed (but unreleased) Vive VR headset is the company’s attempt at creating the most advanced wearable virtual reality set. What’s more, it’s also been dabbling with various wearables as well as the unusual snorkel-shaped RE camera.
It’s always sad to see a brand many are fond of struggling to deal with the aggressive competition in an increasingly saturated market. Especially in developing markets where brands like Xiaomi and Huawei are pulling in customers. And while HTC is attempting to regroup, reorganize and restructure, other new disruptive companies like OnePlus are stepping in and releasing high-end devices without the premium price tag. This will surely prove an obstacle for HTC with its new focus on premium phones.