Where is my phone?

The HTC One, High Tech Computer Corporation’s leading phone is currently experiencing worldwide delays. As of April 24th, AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile are the sole wireless communications service providers that offer the cell phone for sale. Unfortunately, potential clients will be disappointed upon hearing that the phone will be delayed; potentially for several weeks. Originally the HTC One was scheduled to launch in mid-March, but supply issues have pushed back the release for over a month.

Over the prior year, HTC’s profits have dropped to a record low $2.83 million. This accounts for a 98% drop in profits. The HTC One is the paramount flagship model and in order to turn around the company, it must sell well. In March alone, HTC moved only 300,000 phones to nationwide retailers in three countries as supply bottleneck issues arose. HTC indicated a shortage of camera components as the problem responsible for the mass delays. By the end of April, J.P. Morgan Securities’ supply chain checks forecast 1.2 million phones shipping as well as 2.0 million in May.

Oddly enough, the main competitor of the HTC One, the Samsung Galaxy S4, will also be delayed until April 29th on T-Mobile. The Galaxy S4 will be launching on six carriers, however only T-Mobile has set a definitive launch date. In order to cope with the anticipated sales forecasts, Samsung is currently producing 10 million units monthly. T-Mobile will likely be the first carrier to launch with the Galaxy S4 but is already experiencing delays before pre-ordering is available. Once the five other carriers set their release dates, demand will go up and Samsung may not have enough available phones for the amount demanded.

Anticipated sales forecasts generated for both HTC and Samsung may not be realistic over the next several months as both corporations are struggling to produce enough inventory for the demand. This, however, brings up a question of quality. If HTC and Samsung are rushing to mass produce these phones to clear the backorders, will the quality of the phones suffer, or will crashing methods have to be implemented to speed up project length?

In our class we discussed bottleneck situations and how that may jeopardize the timeliness of the process but this article also brings up forecasting models. Unfortunately forecasts are just predictions. When unanticipated situations arise, these forecasts may not be accurate; as exemplified in HTC’s case. Stock markets also rely heavily on forecasts, thus a company may decrease or increase in value today pertaining an act that will be committed in the future. Only time will tell how long consumers will have to wait for their phones as both companies are working relentlessly to produce more phones.

Do you believe that HTC and Samsung should have prepared better for this problem and stockpiled phones ahead of time to avoid this situation?

Which company do you feel will tackle this issue most effectively?



Brown, Justin. “HTC One US Bottleneck Won’t Clear Until After Galaxy S4 Is In Stores?” SidhTech RSS. N.p., 20 Apr. 2013. Web. 24 Apr. 2013. <http://www.sidhtech.com/news/htc-one-vs-samsung-galaxy-s4-us-release/1003194/>.

Davies, Chris. “HTC One Turnaround Tipped as Supply Bottleneck Loosens.” SlashGear. N.p., 15 Apr. 2013. Web. 24 Apr. 2013. <http://www.slashgear.com/htc-one-turnaround-tipped-as-supply-bottleneck-loosens-15277830/>.

Epstein, Zach. “BGR.” Samsung Galaxy S4 Deemed a Winner: Shipments Seen Topping Early Estimates. N.p., 5 Apr. 2013. Web. 24 Apr. 2013. <http://bgr.com/2013/04/05/samsung-galaxy-s4-sales-estimates-414846/>.

Harvey, Cynthia. “HTC Profits Drop 98%.” Datamation. N.p., 8 Apr. 2013. Web. 24 Apr. 2013. <http://www.datamation.com/news/htc-profits-drop-98.html>.

Kovach, Steve. “Samsung Galaxy S4 Delayed On T-Mobile Until April 29.” Business Insider. N.p., 23 Apr. 2013. Web. 24 Apr. 2013. <http://www.businessinsider.com/samsung-galaxy-s4-delayed-on-t-mobile-2013-4>.

Tofel, Kevin C. “HTC One Launch: Available at 2 Carriers; Web Orders for 1; Delays for Dev Edition — Tech News and Analysis.” GigaOM. N.p., 19 Apr. 2013. Web. 24 Apr. 2013. <http://gigaom.com/2013/04/19/htc-one-launch-available-at-2-carriers-web-orders-for-1-delays-for-dev-edition/

10 thoughts on “Where is my phone?

  1. I do believe that both HTC and Samsung should have prepared better for this problem and stockpiled phones, or phone parts, ahead of time to avoid this situation. Luckily both the HTC one and the S4 are both being delayed so neither company has the competitive advantage but this may change the customers wants in regards to which phone they will end up buying. Going back to the issue of the companies not having enough parts for their phones, I believe that even if they had some extra costs on additional parts that they had to store, the costs would be minimal to the amount of sales they could have made if they had launched the phone on time. It is hard to tell which company will be able to tackle this issue more effectively, but from reading this article it seems that both companies have to look at the costs and benefits of launching sooner or later and then determine how they want to go about their launch dates.

  2. Companies with experience and success like these shouldn’t be faltering in these departments. They should have the knowledge and resources to avoid these delays. HTC and Samsung can’t make mistakes now because companies like Apple are fiercely consuming market share in the smartphone market. Hopefully mistakes like these won’t happen again and they learn from their mistakes.

  3. I, too, agree that these experienced and innovative companies should have planned and prepared for the demand of their new products. With adequate research of other newly released smart phones and product forecasting, both companies should have been able to more accurately produce the supply demanded. Delaying the release of the HTC One and S4 could deter potential buyers, leading to a lower profit than if these phones were released on time. The delay in release could also decrease their number of repeat customers. Operations and production should receive more attention; if done properly, it would lead to happier customers, higher sales and larger profits for HTC and Samsung.

  4. This article made me think about how important building positive customer relationship is in a company. I think that quality should take first place when launching new products into marketplaces. Therefore, it should never be compromised. By demonstrating poor quality on the phone, firms may do more damage to a brand name than by delaying the launched products. Customers already have high expectations regarding products. The worst possible situation is to send a faulty product to market. If products exceed customers’ expectation about quality, they will stay loyal customers with the brand they trust. I believe that happy customers are retained. As the owner of HTC phone, I am very disappointed by its quality. I do not have good expectations for this brand anymore. I am ready to move onto Samsung’s Galaxy. I wish I could understand why Samsung has not prepared better for launching new phones, especially after their last success. The issue that Samsung cannot meet its demand creates unnecessary tension in relationship with their customers.

  5. I agree with you on the fact that when these companies try to mass produce their phones, their quality might suffer a little. I feel that they should have not been in this position to begin with because they should have prepared in advance to meet the demand of the customers. Whenever a new phone comes out, there’s always a buzz in the beginning and a lot of people are buying it and I feel like neither of these companies prepared for that. It will be interesting to see what goes on in the coming month and if they are able to come on top and do well. I feel that Samsung will definitely be able to tackle this issue better given their experience and success in the past.

  6. After all this success they had HTC and Samsung can’t make any more mistakes. They can’t keep changing dates for Samsung Galaxy S4. Long time ago HTC had already dropped the profit they can’t do this anymore. After changing dates couples times for Samsung Galaxy S4, I am sure that they are losing customers. They need to have enough inventory because if customers wanting new phone like, Samsung Galaxy S4 they can say no because they don’t have enough inventory, that would just look bad for their company. If they keep doing this and not plan and organized for their new products companies like Apple could take advantage of this.

  7. I am currently enrolled in a consumer behavior class, and we just recently discuss how customers will react to situations like this. Studies have shown that loyal customers will become disloyal due to situations like this. The fact is that these loyal customers show the interest of purchasing these devices from surveys however once service provider show they will delay the phone customers tend to get frustrated and find other alternatives. It’s very important for companies to make sure they have the product at hand before even giving out a date. That way if something was to happen like this again it wouldn’t steer up controversy! I definitely agree that these companies should have enough phones to meet the demand of the people, and if that’s not possible than they should build their inventory until it reaches its demand, then when it meets its potential demand then give a date, sell the phones, and have extra phones for backup!!!

  8. I also agree with everyone else about how if companies began to mass produce then they may suffer the quality of their products. As for the publicity of these new phones, I have not heard much about these phones in comparison to the advertising that was done for the Iphone 5 and the Samsung Galaxy 3. In my opinion, I believe that the HTC One will be a more wanted phone when compared to the Samsung Galaxy 4. The S3 was just released last June but people became crazy about buying it during the Black Friday sale. Therefore most people bought their S3 less than 6 months ago and now Samsung is already releasing the next one. People have already seen what Samsung’s capability is so now it is HTC’s turn to show what they can accomplish.

    1. I agree with a lot of the replies above that both companies should have better prepared for a situation like this. With the smartphone market being so competitive it hard to recover from a screw up like this. With that being said, issues like this do arise everyday for many companies that rely on different manufacturers to provide them with components so it really comes down to how the company will handle this issue. I do believe both companies have the potential to become the market leader but they should not claim to deliver their phones on a specific date until they are 100% sure that they can provide the results to back that up. Like spr1313gmyles said earlier, once a company says they will have delays, customers tend to get discouraged from purchasing the product. It is very important to provide a quality product as this determines the future of the company’s sales. Quality should not be taken for granted, my only advice to the company would be to not announce a product until they are actually satisfied with the quality of the product and can produce the product on the date stated.

  9. I believe if the delay is a few more days then it may not be that trivial, but if it becomes weeks or even longer then Samsung is going to take a hit on its reputation. Also, Samsung and HTC are delaying the phones due to high demand and shortage of the components, but they are announcing about stock shortages closer to the release date when they should’ve known about it earlier. Furthermore, it could also be hard for HTC to beat the success that Samsung has had so far; however, HTC now has some time promote and advertise their HTC One before Samsung S4 hits the market.

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