After a couple of years of steady decline in revenues and profits, the HTC management knows only too well that a lot depends on how the company's latest premium flagship, the HTC 10, is received by the paying public. Recent reports have indicated that U.S. carriers like Verizon have already started shipping the devices to their rightful owners, so users can expect to get their hands on the smartphone any day now. However, not all is nice and peachy for HTC. Reports out of the Taiwan-based company’s homeland now seem to indicate that the device has got off to a rough start in the largest smartphone market in the world – China. The HTC 10 went on pre-order on April 25th on a couple of e-commerce sites in the country, but has only managed to receive 251 pre-orders thus far.
That’s according to a report carried by Focus Taiwan, which says that the company’s latest premium flagship hasn’t exactly been setting the sales charts on fire in the eleven days the device has been available for preorder on TMall and Jingdong Mall. While global smartphone companies like Samsung, LG, Sony and HTC have traditionally struggled in China because of a steady stream of affordably-priced Android handsets in the country, 251 units in almost two weeks is still something that the Taiwanese company would not have bargained for. According to the publication, ‘market sources’ in the country have pointed out that HTC may be suffering because of its decision to launch the HTC 10 Lifestyle instead of the regular top-spec HTC 10. For the uninitiated, the Lifestyle variant is a lower-spec model of the HTC 10 and comes with the Snapdragon 652 under the hood instead of the Snapdragon 820, which powers the mainstream HTC 10.
The pricing is also believed to be one of the reasons that has made HTC’s latest handset unattractive to buyers in China; although, the device is still cheaper to buy in the country than in HTC’s own homeland, Taiwan. While the smartphone costs 3,799 yuan (US$584) in China, it comes with a NT$24,900 ($768) price-tag in Taiwan. Meanwhile, reports about the complete lack of interest for the smartphone among Chinese consumers and persistent rumors about the company spinning off its VR business into a separate company have resulted in HTC’s shares being battered at the Taiwan Stock Exchange. The company’s shares fell 10% in Thursday’s trade to close at NT$74.40 ($2.29).