Thursday May 15, 1997 to Present
Taoyuan City, TaiwanHTC Corporation is a Taiwanese consumer electronics company headquartered in Xindian District, New Taipei City, Taiwan. Founded in 1997, HTC began as an original design manufacturer and original equipment manufacturer, designing and manufacturing laptop computers.
The 2011 Best Global Brands rankings released by Interbrand, listed HTC at #98 and valued it at $3.6 billion. Based on researcher Canalys, in Q3 2011 HTC Corporation became the largest smartphone vendor in the U.S. with 24 percent market share, ahead of Samsung's 21 percent, Apple's 20 percent, and BlackBerry's 9 percent. HTC Corporation made different models for each operator.
The HTC One was released in mid-2013 and, subsequently won various industry awards in the best smartphone and best design categories, but global sales of the HTC One were lower than those for Samsung's Galaxy S4 flagship handset and HTC recorded its first ever quarterly loss in early October 2013: a deficit of just under NT$3 billion (about US$100m, £62m). Marketing problems were identified by HTC as the primary reason for its comparative performance, a factor that had been previously cited by the company.
According to analyst firm comScore, HTC only accounted for 9.3% of the United States smartphone market as of February 2013. In light of the company's decrease in prominence, Chief Executive Peter Chou had informed executives that he would step down if the company's newest flagship phone, the 2013 HTC One, had failed to generate impressive sales results.
A larger variant named the HTC One Max was released in October 2013. Similar in design and features to the HTC One, the upgraded aspects of the One Max include a display measuring 5.9 inches (15 cm), a fingerprint sensor and a removable back cover for expandable memory. The product was released into the European and Asian retail environment in October 2013, followed by a US launch in early November 2013.
In March 2014, HTC released the HTC One (M8), the next version of the HTC One flagship, at press conferences in London and New York City. In a change from previous launches, the HTC One was made available for purchase on the company website and North American mobile carrier websites on the same day a few hours after the launch.
In August 2014 HTC announced a Windows Phone-powered variant of the One (M8), their first using the operating system since 2012. HTC ended its long relationship with Microsoft afterwards due to Nokia's dominance in Windows Phone devices, and started focusing solely on Android.
In June and October 2015, HTC reported net losses; the company has faced increased competition from other smartphone makers, including Apple, Samsung, and others, which had resulted in a decline in its smartphone sales, as well a major loss of market share. Its smartphone market share had risen back to 7.2 percent in April 2015 due to its strong sales of recent devices, but HTC's stock price had fallen by 90 percent since 2011.
On 21 September 2017, Google announced that it would acquire roughly half of the 4,000 employees who worked in HTC's design and research staff, and non-exclusive licenses to smartphone-related intellectual property held by HTC, for US$1.1 billion. The employees included the team involved with Google's Pixel smartphone, which was manufactured by HTC. Google stated that the purchase was part of its efforts to bolster its first-party hardware business. The transaction was completed on 30 January 2018; while HTC will continue to produce its own smartphones, the company has stated that it planned to increase its focus on the Internet of Things (IoT) and virtual reality going forward.
In July 2018 HTC has revealed that it has entered into a partnership with games and apps developer and publisher Animoca. This includes product development and joint collaboration in areas such as games, blockchain, artificial intelligence, machine learning, augmented reality and virtual reality. Animoca's games will be pre-installed on HTC devices in the future.