LIVE FROM GSMA MOBILE WORLD CONGRESS 2014: Struggling handset vendor HTC unveiled a new mid-market smartphone – the Desire 816 – while teasing with a possible 25 March launch date for the latest version of the high-end HTC One family, both moves intended to brighten the company’s currently downbeat prospects
The event was led by chairwoman Cher Wang who has taken a greater role in the running of the company since last year. CEO Peter Chou has since concentrated more on product and innovation.
As a result the company has benefited from becoming “much more focused on its product portfolio”, said Wang who is now in charge of areas such as sales, marketing and supplier relationship.
The company’s new Desire 816 is striking for having a 5.5-inch screen, large for a mid-range model, although targeting this segment with big screens is more common in Asian markets.
The model will go on sale from March in China then the rest of region in April.
The company also flagged up a big launch at the end of March. While declining to confirm, it strongly suggested another member for the HTC One family.
In addition, the company launched a scheme called Power To Give that aims to leverage the processing power of smartphones for research projects.
Pulling together masses of users will support scientists crunching the numbers on researching in areas such as the environment, medicine or even the extraterrestrial.
Users who download the Power To Give app must have their handsets on recharge and make sure they are connected to Wi-Fi (to avoid battery loss or data charges) and can they participate.