Android's Doing Well? HTC Profits Fell 91% Over The Last Year

James Han
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It’s generally a bad sign when your profits drop 91% year-over-year. It seems that HTC’s phones have been edged out of the market by Samsung, despite generally positive reviews. According to Sky News, while HTC made $379.84 million in profit in October-December 2011, they only made $34.47 million over the same period of time in 2012. This wasn’t true for all android manufacturers. Meanwhile Samsung, another Android manufacturer, saw a revenue growth in 2012 compared to the last year.

What happened? Are Samsung’s phones that much better than HTCs? Or were these two similar product lines, that were competing for roughly the same marketshare, differentiated by something else?

There are some downright bland commercials for HTCs phones. The advertisement for theHTC One S in particular has no spoken audio, and mostly features text that goes over a mix of features and benefits. It looks like a good phone, but it’s a perfectly ignorable ad that fails to present the phone as an object of desire. The ad campaign for the HTC One X from AT&T is a little better, but it still presents the HTC One X as a tool and not as a status symbol.

Did this ad make you care about anything?

Meanwhile Samsung’s provocative ads leveraged the Galaxy S3 as a competitor to the (then upcoming) iPhone 5, swaying away Apple die-hards while they are waiting in line. Samsung’s advertising made the Galaxy S3 THE phone to compete against the iPhone, making every other Android phone seem forgettable. Samsung embedded their the Galaxy S3 into a larger narrative that made their phone the phone to have.

Say what you will, my Apple-loving brethren, Samsung’s ad is memorable.

Were HTCs phones in 2012 that much worse than Samsungs? Is there room for more than one major Android manufacturer? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

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