Does HTC need to buy an OS? Probably not

I don't think that HTC needs to 'buy' an OS, after all, what would it buy?

Interesting piece over on Focus Taiwan which reports on quotes made by HTC chairwoman Cher Wang in relation to HTC buying its own operating system.

Here's the quote that's got the blogosphere all fired up:

"We have given it thought and we have discussed it internally, but we will not do it on impulse," Wang said in an interview with the Economic Observer of China.

I'm not even sure that the quote even suggests that HTC is serious about this, since thought and internal discussions are far removed from action. And that bit about not acting on impulse also suggests that this is not something in HTC's immediate future.

The next quote makes it clear where HTC is headed:

"We can use any OS we want. We are able to make things different from our rivals on the second or third layer of a platform," Wang said. "Our strength lies in understanding an OS, but it does not mean that we have to produce an OS."

The 'second or third layer' Wang mentions here refers to the HTC Sense UI that HTC ships on devices to make them easier to use than the standard Android UI. Wang understand that HTC doesn't need to buy and OS to do a good job of putting an OS on a device.

I don't think that HTC needs to 'buy' an OS. First of all, what would it buy" The failed webOS that Palm and HP couldn't really do anything with, or the failed Meego? Secondly, there are only three mobile OSes that are worth bothering with nowadays - iOS, Android and Windows Phone - and two of those OSes - Android and Windows Phone - are open to HTC. The idea of buying an OS and then trying to turn that into a viable ecosystem just doesn't make sense.

Is there any reason why HTC might have been thinking about buying an OS? Well, HP made some big noises about webOS, right up until the wheels fell off so that might have had something to do with it. Then Microsoft's cosy relationship with Nokia might have made the company a little nervous that it was being handed its hat with regards to Windows Phone.

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