HTC to launch more budget-friendly smartphones in 2014, targeting the $150-$300 range

By Alexandra Burlacu | Feb 10, 2014 09:55 AM EST

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HTC will apparently also cater to the mid-tier segment of the smartphone market this year, planning to release handsets in the $150 - $300 range.

Despite its notable efforts to step up its game, the company still didn't see much profit from its smartphone business. After releasing a bunch of different smartphones back in 2012 without seeing any high sales, HTC decided to focus on the high-end segment of the market in 2013.

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The company launched its flagship HTC One in 2013, which received high praise for its premium aluminum unibody design, as well as high-end specs and features that made it one of the best smartphones on the market. Seeing that the HTC One was well-received, the company decided to focus on higher-end phones and launched spinoffs of its flagship, but its profits were still disappointing.

It now seems that HTC is looking to change its strategy and expand its range. The company will still focus on launching high-end devices, bus it will also cater to the mid-tier segment, releasing cheaper smartphones. While high-end flagships are much touted and praised, not everyone can afford to pay the price of a premium smartphone. In a recent interview with Reuters, HTC acknowledged that it missed out on a potentially greater profit by not releasing more affordable handsets.

"'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," reads the report.

In other words, HTC plans to continue making high-end smartphones with prices to match, but it will also launch lower-cost, mid-tier handsets that might see a wider adoption. It remains to be seen just how the company will manage to keep a balance between its high-end and cheaper devices, but if done right, it may see a significant boost in profits.

According to the report, HTC will keep launching high-end devices that would cost roughly $600 before subsidies, but it will also bring budget smartphones to the market, which would retail for a much more affordable $150 - $300 price tag.



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