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HTC: Apple and Samsung won't steal our lunch

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HTC is insisting it'll do better next year as its shares plummet amid fears over its profits.

The smartphone maker's stocks have fallen 32 per cent since 15 November as the company gives ground in the highly competitive sector to rising stars like Samsung and well-established dominators like Apple, both in market share and in patent disputes.

Those fears appeared to be well-grounded last week, when HTC reviewed its growth forecast for the fourth quarter to no growth.

"Due to global macro economic downturn and market competition, the assumptions of 2011 Q4 financial forecast provided earlier are no longer applicable," the company said in a canned statement.

"HTC expects 2011 Q4 revenue to be approximately the same as Q4 last year. Despite 2011 Q4 revenue [being] not what we expected, HTC has strong confidence in its products and operation. We expect that growth will return in 2012 H1."

Despite the revision however, and the falling shares, the Taiwanese company is staying upbeat.

"I don't think it's so serious," chief financial officer Winston Yung told Reuters on Sunday.

"We have six quarters of improvement, the most conservative guidance is 45 million units of shipments this year, a lot higher than 25 million last year," he added.

He also thinks that the new models that the firm has for next year will help make it more competitive.

"We will focus on the product next year, better and more competitive. Other than new LTE phones for the US market, we also have phones for the global market. We will launch some worldwide flagship products. We're confident in them," he said.

Unfortunately, the company refuses to discuss its "product roadmap", meaning an HTC spokesperson wouldn't give El Reg any juicy tidbits about what these flagship phones might be like or when we might see them.

Which may not be the best idea in the world, since just saying things are going to get better doesn't seem to be boosting too much investor confidence. Shares dropped 3.63 per cent on Monday, to close at just 471.50 Taiwanese dollars (£9.95), a far cry from this year's high in April of 1,300 (£27.43). ®

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