HTC has confirmed that it is working on a wearable device for later in the year. There are only a few possibilities for what that could be, a smartwatch, smart glass or health band. We would bet that HTC is working on the smartwatch which appears to be the big thing of 2014 as Samsung prepares to release the Samsung Galaxy Gear 2. Pebble is also on the market, Sony has Smartwatch 2, there are also third party devices like Pebble and Qualcomm Toq. Meanwhile companies like Google, Apple and LG have also given indications that they may start working on a smartwatch.
The HTC smartwatch confirmation came as HTC suffered a 30% sales drop last year and lost ground worldwide to LG and Lenovo. HTC is hoping to rebound in 2014 by releasing the next-gen HTC One 2 “M8” which will have to compete with a number of other devices in a fairly crowded high-end flagship market. These include the Samsung Galaxy S5, the LG G Pro 2, the Sony Xperia Z2 and potentially the LG G3. Ultimately however the market seems to be responding positively to HTC regardless, Chang Chialin, chief financial officer and head of global sales of Tayoun said, “We feel positive and optimistic about 2014 when compared to 2013.”
The HTC smartwatch wasn’t explicitly mentioned by chairman Cher Wang but she did say, “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. These are customer-centric problems.” The wearable market along with an HTC tablet will be the focus of the company in 2014. HTC wants to make sure that a smartwatch isn’t just a gimmick before releasing it. So far despite having worked on both smartwatches and tablets for a number of years with companies like Microsoft, HTC hasn’t released either device (aside from Flyer and Jetstream in 2011). HTC ended up canceling a planned 10.1-inch Windows RT tablet and raid it worked for a number of years with Microsoft on a smartwatch that wasn’t released. Now HTC is working on an Amazon smartphone. HTC will need to figure out its plan if it wants to seriously enter the wearable market.