"Manufacturers & Operators Should Work in Tandem"

by Sonal Desai    Mar 09, 2009

What is HTC’s India strategy?

HTC is extremely bullish about the Indian smartphone market, and is constantly striving for increased brand awareness and deeper penetration. A wider portfolio, achieving better price points, making our devices more feature rich and improving upon our distribution channels, so that our devices are readily available across the length and breadth of the country, are some of our key strategies that we have adopted. HTC has always believed in delivering maximum value proposition to its customers. Our primary focus has always been to improve our handsets, and to enhance the mobility experience of our customers through improved form factors, better user interfaces and innovative features.

What are the investment plans for India?

We have very aggressive plans as part of our go-to market strategy in the coming times. The idea is to create maximum awareness for HTC, and to compel prospective customers to give a thought to HTC during the buying process. We are looking to ramp up our distribution channel to a greater extent, and increase our retail presence further, particularly in tier-II and III cities. Also, we are looking at increasing spends, significantly in marketing and promotion. These promotions will be undertaken through effective marketing communication, branding, point of purchase materials and various promotional schemes and offers for the channel and end-retailers.

How can data-centric handheld devices change the way in which data is consumed?

With 3G in India, delivery of data as well as its consumption is all set to undergo a radical change. 3G will essentially allow Indian mobile phone users to access data at faster speeds, offer much-enhanced multimedia content and in essence open the window to a host of new and better mobile services. Once 3G is rolled out consumers will definitely experience enhanced networks, lesser call drops and superior voice clarity.

With GPS, point-to-point navigation on the road and detailed maps of a city will become very popular. M-commerce, which seeks to replace all traditional modes of payments like cash and cards, will make their foray in a huge way in coming times. Mobile Internet, e-education, telemedicine, interactive gaming, streaming and download of movies and videos, video calling and a host of other operator-dependent services will be possible through the 3G platform.

In these days when data is disparate and unstructured, what can be HTC’s policy to ensure that users get seamless experience, typically when we are talking about not only typical mobile apps, but all other kinds of data?

HTC has been proactively looking at developing hardware and incorporate better functionalities in its devices to give our customers a seamless experience as far as data usage goes. As hardware providers, HTC devices are equipped to provide the best-in-class mobility experience, but data services are also largely dependent on the various mobile operators. Thus, device manufacturers and operators need to work in tandem for the same, to ensure that users get a continuous and seamless experience.

What kind of technology does the company uses for various apps?

The business and artificial intelligence and the development of apps are carried out in HTC’s research facility in Taoyuan, Taiwan. The company has been investing heavily in the R&D for developing apps that push the boundaries of innovation and take mobile telephony to the next level. Currently, most of the new HTC devices feature apps that use G-Sensors, accelerometers, auto-rotation and auto-orientation of screen. In the coming times, users can expect a lot more of these apps that are cutting edge in terms of innovation and using upcoming technologies like artificial intelligence.

What will be your 3G policy?

Globally, one of HTC’s core strength has been its innovative, feature-rich, converged 3G devices. Currently, HTC has two 3G devices in its portfolio in the Indian market, Touch 3G and Touch HD, and plans to introduce many more 3G devices in India in the near future

Which are the verticals you will target and strategies?

HTC’s devices cater to consumers across various categories and verticals. Today, consumers are looking for more out of their existing device - seeking devices that bundle mobility, connectivity, entertainment and faster Internet browsing. We are today offering devices from price points starting from Rs. 10K going upwards to about Rs. 42K. We believe that our range of data-centric devices have something to offer for every segment - from a student to a housewife to a businessman. It is our endeavor to offer devices that appeal to people with varying tastes and interests, be it a music aficionado, a video enthusiast, a shutterbug or maybe a user who surfs the internet from his mobile phone.