HTC can't afford to mess around with a rumored Windows RT tablet

Summary:There are rumors that HTC made be coming out with a Windows RT tablet, and I think that is a huge mistake for the financially failing company. It has an excellent device in the One, and needs to market the heck out of it to try to get back in the game.

I like a good April Fool's joke, and at times it is tough to figure out if something is true or not, especially given the fact that so many stories are written without verification just to bring in page views. I hope the rumored HTC Windows RT tablet is one of these fake rumors, but I suspect it might be real. HTC is experiencing serious financial issues, and it doesn't have the bandwidth to lose focus of its smartphone sales to spend time on a platform that hasn't generated much excitement.

I bought a Microsoft Surface RT, and found it to be a decent device, primarily for the student who needs Office on the go. However, I think it serves a limited audience and I sold mine to buy the Surface Pro, which is much more useful for my needs. Given the outstanding Microsoft Surface RT quality and design with limited platform appeal, I don't know why any other manufacturer would waste resources competing with an RT product.

HTC previously made a couple of Android tablets, the HTC Flyer and HTC Jetstream, neither of which reportedly sold very well. There are many reasons for their failure, including a lack of upgrade to current versions of Android, extremely high pricing, and limited tablet functionality in Android.

There is no doubt that HTC can make fantastic hardware, but design is not its problem. Upgradeability, both in terms of hardware (microSD card expansion and removable battery) and software (limited support for updating devices with HTC Sense to the next version of Android) are issues that it has with its smartphones. It also lacks any real marketing, and if people are not talking about its products, then they are not buying them. HTC should spend any available money they have on marketing the heck out of the HTC One and forgetting about secondary devices like a Windows RT or Android tablet.

An HTC Windows RT tablet would probably have hardware that rivaled Microsoft's Surface, but few would likely care. It would also likely be priced out of most consumer's budget and sell maybe a few thousand. HTC needs to focus and double down on marketing the One, so hopefully this rumored tablet ends up being just a rumor or I honestly doubt the long-term viability of HTC as we know it.

Topics: Mobility, HTC, Microsoft Surface, Tablets, Windows 8

About

Matthew Miller started using a mobile devices in 1997 and has been writing news, reviews, and opinion pieces ever since. He is a co-host with GigaOM's Kevin Tofel on the MobileTechRoundup podcast and an author of three Wiley Companion series books. Matthew started using mobile devices with a US Robotics Pilot 1000 and has owned over 200 d... Full Bio

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