Mobile

HTC One delayed due to suppliers who think it’s not a ‘tier-one customer’

HTC One 2013 with Blinkfeed

It doesn’t matter how great your phone is if you can’t actually get it built.

That’s the problem HTC is facing right now, as it has delayed its latest flagship phone, the HTC One, to late March and early April in some markets. According to the Wall Street Journal, HTC’s problems stretch all the way into its supply chain, which has seemingly lost faith in HTC after its recent rough years.

“HTC has had difficulty in securing adequate camera components as it is no longer a tier-one customer,” one unnamed executive told the WSJ. That’s a pretty big deal, since the One’s unique camera is supposed to be one of its killer features. Additionally, HTC is apparently having trouble sourcing the phone’s attractive metal casing (I guess this is why Samsung sticks with ugly plastic cases).

“The company has a problem managing its component suppliers as it has changed its order forecasts drastically and frequently following last year’s unexpected slump in shipments,” the anonymous exec said.

The One may be HTC’s last shot at rebuilding its business — the company’s profits fell a whopping 91 percent in Q4, and it hasn’t had a hit phone in several years. It’s particularly sad, since HTC’s recent phones, like last year’s One X and One S, have been more appealing than Samsung’s when it comes to overall design and functionality.

Ultimately, it seems like HTC just can’t compete with Samsung’s supply chain skills and marketing might.

Photo: Devindra Hardawar/VentureBeat


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