By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
Bellevue, Wash. – HTC acknowledged delays in shipping its HTC One flagship smartphone, saying the phone will be available before the end of April in the U.S.
The One is seen as a key to turning around the company’s shrinking sales.
In February, HTC promised sales would begin in March through more than 185 carriers in more than 80 countries, including the U.S. As it turns out, the HTC One will be available in the last week of March only in the U.K., Germany and HTC’s home country of Taiwan. The phone will then be rolled out across Europe, North America and most of Asia-Pacific “before the end of April,” the company said in a statement.
The phone was to be available sometime in March through the direct distribution channels of AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint and Cincinnati Bell as well as through exclusive indirect launch partner Best Buy, which was expecting to offer the phone around the third week of March. A Best Buy spokesman, however, noted that no specific delivery date had ever been passed on to the company.
“We appreciate our customers’ patience, and believe that once they have the phone in their hands, they will agree that it has been worth the wait,” HTC said.
The company also said that it “has seen unprecedented demand for and interest in the new HTC One, and the care taken to design and build it is evidenced in early reviews.”
Earlier this week, the Wall Street Journal cited HTC executives as blaming a shortage of components such as metal casings and camera components for the delay. One executive said the company had difficulties in securing enough camera components because, as a result of declining HTC sales, the company is no longer a tier-one customer.
During the phone’s launch event, the company promised its largest rollout ever for a device. The company touted multiple differentiating features in the 4G LTE Android JellyBean phone, calling it the first phone with all-aluminum unibody chassis and pointing to such new Android-phone features as live-stream information feeds on home-screen tiles.
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