This week HTC surprised with the launch of an entirely new flagship smartphone, that marked a departure from its previous HTC One series. The HTC U Ultra is made from a glass front and back, in contrast with the metal unibody used for previous HTC flagships.
But it has since emerged that HTC has not given up on its previous smartphone range entirely. A HTC source has told CNET that further One series smartphones have not been ruled out, cryptically stating:
“All options are on the table for the One line.”
There are two obvious routes by which the One series could return. Either the company could produce mid-range handsets based around the HTC One generation of Android smartphones, or a new flagship could be released in 2018.
The last One series device to be released was 2016’s HTC 10. Interestingly, when asked in a recent interview with Engadget whether we will see a HTC 11, Chialin Chang, President of Smartphone and Connected Devices, simply ruled out the device being made available in 2017.
In reality much depends on HTC’s future financial performance, as to whether it will be able to keep investing in the development of new flagship smartphones. Although if the HTC U Ultra proves a commercial success, then the Taiwanese company is likely to commit to the line as its main flagship device.
By far the most likely option is that HTC releases new One series mid-range handsets. This type of strategy would actually be little more than a continuation of how HTC has been operating.
Last year the company outed the HTC Desire 10 lifestyle and HTC Desire 10 pro. These handsets effectively blended HTC’s mid-range Desire brand together with the 10 series.