Trading of HTC’s Shares To Halt -- Will there be a Takeover by Google Soon?
Tim Culpan, a tech columnist for Bloomberg, was among the first to report about it, posting a tweet that says HTC’s shares will halt trading on Thursday this week, pending a really important announcement. The Taiwan Stock Exchange has also confirmed the news. Nobody knows what this announcement will be, although numerous industry watchers are predicting that it will be about Google acquiring HTC’s mobile business.
Rumors about Google buying HTC’s smartphone division have been brewing for several months now. While it is true that HTC remains a recognizable mobile brand that sells Android powered handsets, it is no secret that the Taiwanese phone maker has been struggling to compete lately, especially with Samsung, Apple, and Chinese companies like Huawei, Oppo, Vivo, and Xiaomi.
Back in April earlier this year, the company started to drop the prices of some of its high profile smartphone releases, including the U Ultra, and later in June, even its 2017 flagship offering, the U11, in an effort to generate better sales numbers. With its financials suffering in recent quarters, there is even talk that it might go ahead and sell its virtual reality (VR) business. This segment is currently its most valuable and best performing division.
Now if Google would enter into the picture, things could dramatically change for the better. Google is already one of the biggest tech companies in the planet, but in the world of smartphones, it is still relatively a newbie. Sure, it may have previously thrown its hat in the ring with the Motorola Mobile business several years ago, only to end up selling it to Chinese mobile giant Lenovo for $2.91 billion back in 2014. But it did quite well with the launch of its Pixel devices last year, and is no doubt trying to explore more ways to generate some momentum (starting with the debut of new generation Pixel phones on October 4th).
Could acquiring HTC help Google become as big as Samsung or Apple? Maybe, maybe not. Nothing is ever certain the smartphone business, after all. But in the case of Google, having an already existing relationship with HTC might just help. Not many people may know this, but the Pixel devices were actually manufactured by HTC. The Taiwan based company is a manufacturing contractor of Google’s, but if it becomes part of Google, this could significantly improve the supply levels of Pixel devices (which by the way are in limited availability, due to the fact that apart from Google itself, they can only be bought from Verizon Wireless).