Wearable technologies are slowly becoming a popular segment of the consumer electronics industry, and with major players such as Samsung joining in, more companies will soon follow. According to HTC CEO Peter Chou, his company will need to focus on wearable technology as a major part of HTC's future.
Chou said in a recent interview that although wearable tech will be a big part of HTC moving forward, it has been gimmicky so far -- meaning the Taiwanese company wants to take its time entering the market.
No More Gimmicks
Reviews of Samsung's Galaxy Gear have been relatively bad and the consensus seems to be that the Galaxy Gear is more of a gimmick than a useful smart watch. This is exactly the kind of thing that Chou is trying to avoid and is the reason HTC is not already trying to push out a smart watch.
“It has to meet a need, otherwise if it’s just a gimmick or concept, it’s not for people’s day-to-day lives,” Chou said. As long as HTC can find a useful application for smart watches, it should try to enter the market in the near future, and presumably will do so as early as 2014.
Chou knows that wearable technology will be a key part of HTC in the coming years but he has yet to find a way for HTC to actually enter the market without just following the crowd. So, until Chou and his fellow HTC executives find a way to enter the promising wearable tech market, HTC will focus on tablets and smartphones.
At the same time Chou was talking about HTC's interest in wearable technologies, as well as his personal role changes within the company, HTC Chairwoman Cher Wang talked about the company's coming tablet. Although very little was revealed about the HTC slate, Wang said: "When the [HTC] tablet comes out it will be something nice and disruptive....There are a lot of devices to innovate....Ubiquitous intelligence is not just wearables."
Chou's Shift in Focus
Even though these new initiatives are promising for HTC, it still has to focus on smartphones for the time being. Since the company has had a hard time in the smartphone market, Chou is shifting his focus in order to boost HTC's presence in the market as well as find new ways to compete against Samsung, LG and Apple.
In order for Chou to focus on smartphones and other HTC products, he has handed off many of HTC's marketing and sales duties to Wang. In doing so, HTC's CEO can better focus on coming up with product ideas and bringing them to the market, rather than spending his time looking at sales numbers.
However, this shift in focus will be temporary, with Chou saying he will take on his regular duties as soon as HTC's smartphone department turns around.