HTC reverses downward slide, posts first quarterly profit in three years

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Credit: Rob Schultz

HTC made a profit of about $14 million in the last quarter of 2014, roughly double what analysts predicted. While it’s not the same kind of profits a behemoth like Apple typically enjoys, HTC’s turnaround indicates it may survive a rather dark period that included executive shakeups and dismal sales performance.

The turnaround is thanks to a strategy that focused on building multiple mid-range handsets for emerging markets and budget-minded buyers. While the HTC One line always did well, the company needed to fill in the gap for those who wanted a good smartphone that didn’t retail for $700. The HTC One Remix and others are cheaper than the top of the line, but in all are pretty good performers with respectable build quality.

While it may not be a major source of revenue, another positive for HTC is the newest pure Android tablet, the Nexus 9. We’re also likely to see a One M9 phone this year, as the company has continually touted its focus on design at the high end of its product line.

Why this matters: HTC builds some of the best Android hardware out there - it’s One M8 was our favorite phone of 2014. So it’s good for the ecosystem that one of the leaders may be staving off extinction. It’s also one of the better companies at delivering timely Android updates, pledging to bring them to its lineup within 90 days of a major Android OS release. So while we don’t play favorites, we’re hopeful HTC can hang around and keep producing quality gear.

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