HTC results might move Samsung away from using expensive build materials
Today HTC confirmed that the coming quarter might be very bad for the Taiwanese smartphone maker. HTC launched the HTC One early this year, a smartphone made out of aluminium. Samsung announced the Galaxy S4 a month after the One, and bloggers and hardcore smartphone customers began to blame Samsung for their build choice. HTC even tweeted in public about Samsung’s build compared with the HTC One: where HTC went with an aluminium unibody for the One, Samsung once again opted for plastic (polycarbonate). Naturally, the Galaxy S4 feels decidedly less premium, and responding to complaints Samsung said that they can’t develop that high amount of devices by using an aluminium body. Okay, this might be true, and we all know aluminium costs more money than polycarbonate.
Now, again HTC has warned their shareholders about bad results in the coming months. One of the reasons might be the cost price of one HTC One (pun intended). Mostly all Android device prices drop after a couple of months, which might be the biggest problem for HTC as the company isn’t an OEM like Apple that can keep the prices high and still sell millions of iPhones every quarter.
Now, while HTC may have difficult times ahead, this could even be sad news for Samsung customers who want to have aluminium or metal bodied smartphones. If HTC’s revenue and profit drops (the company is anticipating loss for the first time in its history), Samsung may decide the risk of using aluminium/premium-feeling materials is too high and continue to stick to plastic, especially when it continues to give them millions in sales.
However, Samsung earns considerably more than HTC and develops almost everything in-house, which could mean that Samsung might test expensive materials in high amount at some stage. Samsung recently bought 50% of SGL Group, a carbon fiber manufacturer, so things can certainly change, but for now, don’t be too hopeful to see a change in the plastic tradition.