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HTC's wearable device set for Xmas: Wang

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Taiwan's HTC Corp. is set to unveil its first wearable device in time for this year's Christmas shopping season after years of development, HTC Chairwoman Cher Wang was quoted as saying in a Bloomberg News report published yesterday.

“Many years ago we started looking at smartwatches and wearables, but we believe that we really have to solve the battery problems and the LCD light problems,” she said in the report. “These are customer-centric problems.”

Speaking in a Wednesday interview at Bloomberg's headquarters in New York, Wang also stressed the significance of HTC's marketing efforts after the well-reviewed HTC One flagship smartphone failed to boost the company's sales last year.

“It's really not only the budget increase, it's the way you spend the money. Is it smart?” said Wang, who declined to reveal HTC's marketing budget for this year. “There's a lot of ways to reach the audience right now.”

HTC, once the world's fourth-largest smartphone maker, posted an operating loss in the fourth quarter of 2013, its second consecutive quarterly operating loss after being in the black every quarter since going public in 2002.

The Taoyuan-based manufacturer told investors during a conference call Nov. 5 that it was working on reducing its operating costs, including marketing expenses, in the fourth quarter to a level below third-quarter costs in a bid to return the company to profitability.

HTC shares rose 0.39 percent to NT$129.5 (US$4.27) in morning trading Thursday on the Taiwan Stock Exchange. The company lost 53 percent of its market value last year.

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