We've been reporting on difficult times for Taiwan's HTC for quite a while now, and sadly we're by no means at the end of the road yet.
The company revealed today its first quarter revenue would be worse than expected, that margins were falling and it now saw the only way forward as reducing its focus on the mid- to high-end and upping its presence in emerging markets.
HTC's revenues are now expected to come in up to 17% lower than the December quarter, which as we reported last month saw a massive 91% drop in net profit year on year.
And with HTC already being forced to trim its margins to compete with Apple and Samsung globally, it now looks like it's shifting strategy (again) to target the fast-growing smartphone market in China, where more affordable devices are far more popular than high-end models.
HTC chief financial officer Chang Chia-Lin told investors today that the company could potentially come in as low as half the price of its current lowest priced handset in China, which goes for 1,999 yuan (just over £200).
“We're going to go down, but not below 1,000,” Chang said. “We see there's still room to play.”
Maybe there is, but it's bad news for HTC fans in the UK. A focus on lower prices means on the one hand lower margins per device in the quest for higher sales. That's likely to not only mean more mass-market handsets from HTC, but also handsets that never make it as far as these shores in the first place.