HTC scaling back smartphone creation in 2012

Given the gushing flood of smartphones that washed across us during 2011, it’s somehow refreshing to note, while toweling ourselves down, that at least one major industry player intends to shift focus from quantity to quality in 2012.

That’s not to say that smartphone specialist HTC produces sub-standard products—far from it—but the Taiwan-based manufacturer has said it plans to craft only a select few handsets this year, which should allow it to concentrate on delivering singularly standout devices.

“We had a fantastic year [in 2011], with 65 percent growth year-on-year in the UK,” outlined HTC UK boss Phil Robertson in a Mobile Today report.

“But in Q4 we delivered a lot more products than in the past. Now we want to create more of a ‘Hero’ approach,” he added. “We make great phones, but it is hard to do that when the portfolio is spread too much.”

And so, with 19 different HTC handsets pushed out during 2011—five alone in Q4—the device maker has said it needs to get back to focusing on the creation of amazing hardware and great customer experience.

According to a vague Robertson, that means giving HTC customers “something special” during 2012, which will be achieved by not segmenting its smartphone product line with a whole raft of new SKUs.

Some of the HTC handsets likely lost in 2011’s smartphone ether or overshadowed by the iPhone 4S include, the Sensation, the Thunderbolt, the Rezound, the Status, and the Rhyme.

We expect to steal a glimpse at HTC’s scaled-back 2012 roadmap during next month’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

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