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?
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