HTC reportedly abandons full-sized Windows RT tablets

Yesterday, a source within HTC announced that the company's plan to design full-sized tablets running Microsoft’s Windows RT operating system would be called off. The anonymous tipper stated that low demand for Windows RT devices and high cost are a reason for its cancellation.

HTC reportedly still has plans to release a 7 inch ARM tablet running the Windows RT operating system, but analysts are pointing at the company’s possible recent decision as a foreshadow for Microsoft’s future – I disagree.

HTC has been enduring hard times recently with sales slides and declines in market share; their attempt to jump on-board the Windows Phone 8 train has been less than successful as Nokia takes the spotlight. The company is releasing a fewer number of devices into markets that it feels it will be most successful, such as the Android handset market with its One smartphone.

HTC’s possible decision to cut full-sized Windows RT tablets is less of a concern for Microsoft and more of an insight into the Taiwanese handset manufacturer’s financial state. The company might be at a loss of resources and money to devote research and development to high risk products without a guaranteed return.

Microsoft recently launched a television and web campaign to show off the capabilities of its Surface RT and OEM partner devices based on the ARM chipset. The problem with Windows RT might not be about its capabilities, but instead the fact that consumers don't know what the operating system actually offers.

The latest campaign shows how devices running Windows RT from Dell, ASUS, and HP can compete with Apple’s iPad by offering lighter and thinner devices with expandable storage, wider peripheral compatibilities, side by side multitasking and Microsoft’s full Office desktop suite – all at a much lower price point.

So is HTC a sign of Microsoft in danger or just a sign that HTC is so financially bound at the moment that they can’t take many risks past the market-stable Android platform?

Source: Bloomberg, Windows (opens in new tab)

  • I'm glad they did. A 12" tablet? They need to focus on a 7 - 8" tablet
  • 12 inch rt tablet?  ideas like this the reason why HTC is face planting?
  • I would be totally into a 12" RT tablet. Just becouse of the better use of the desktop invirement.
    It could be maybe thinner than a 10" one because of the extra lenght and widt. It´s perfect. My 12.5" Laptop has about the measures of a  a Standart DIN A4 sheet. It should fit good in any bag. I think 12" and 8" could clasification for tablets than 7 and 10".
    I really hope the surface 2 comes in 8" and 12", but unfortunately its unlikely beause of the touch and typecovers that already exists.
    Tablets for just home use could be even bigger 13"; 15" or even 18" (like the XPS 18 from DELL)
  • No surprise here. Would be cool to have a tablet designed after the 8x though.....
  • Why? They wont support it, just like they don't support the 8X. I've been trying to buy the red version via ATT and all they offer is the California Blue or Yellow. I just wanted it for my son because he likes red, but as stated, they don't have it. I was willing to give them  try despite their lack of support for wp, but I will stick to Nokia. I just spoke to my MS representatives this morning about manufacturers like HTC & Samsung who made devices simply to appease MS but don't do anything to encourage app development or release firmware updates for their respective devices. I also mentioned  how cellular carriers sales people are still not pushing WP8 or Win 8 and MS simply needs to join in with Nokia producing their own phones/tablets. Abandon all manufacturers who abandon them. They said the input was needed as I am an IT manager for a large city.
  • The Red 8X is exclusive to Verizon. I second Waiting For The Night , I received 3 updates for my 8X & a bunch of updates for their apps , while its not as frequent as Nokia's , I wouldn't call it "Doesn't Support The 8X"
  • HTC has backed Microsoft since the Windows Mobile days and released several WP7 devices. Nokia didn't join the party until late WP7/release of WP8 and they have stolen the spotlight ever since. OEM's do show support for their devices and HTC has not COMPLETELY abandoned 8X users and have released several updates. But it is clear Nokia takes things a steps further than that. Samsung has the capabilities to make great phones and they do seem to support the ATIV phone rather nicely but again Nokia just takes it a step further... Microsoft would be rather dumb to abandon any of these OEM partners because most of them (except Samsung) have an uphill battle to try and gain valuable market share.
  • Good .. They should concentrate on 7-8 inch
  • Definitely implies that HTC are the ones in financial trouble at the moment, not MICROSOFT. :-)
  • Surprise surprise
  • I doubt they have the money left. They also need to prove to customers that they can support a phone past release day before people start buying their products again.
  • This all the way. My hd7 stopped being supported day after mango released.
  • 7'' and 8'' are the tablet sizes of the future. Naturally iPads are selling (they're iPads after all). But clearly Apple is having more succes with the iPad Mini. Same goes for Google. The Nexus 10 was a failure (sold less then the Surface) but the Nexus 7 was a big succes. So most OEMS that are making Windows tablets should focus on 7'' and 8''. Leave the bigger sizes for select OEMS who focus on select markets such as productivity (business, students, etc).
    I also think that bigger tablets come with enough battery life to run full Windows 8. Especially if Intel comes with their improved processors. So Windows RT is more at home on smaller tablets that need a lighter OS. Having said that I love my Surface RT!
  • HTC is probably in deeper trouble than anyone realizes...even corporate heads are in denial about their situation. I loved my Trophy but I won't buy anything HTC ...I don't think they'll be in business in a couple of years.
  • HTC is having a financial issues & they are choosing their decisions wisely because they don't have the luxury of a product failing, they might not survive something like this . Unlike Samsung or Sony ... Etc they can afford a failed product , HTC can't !
    They have a lot on stake & they are counting on the One's success (i remember reading that Peter Chou will step down if the One failed) ... Which is kinda selling well ... Plus HTC's previous attempts at the tablet market didn't really work out with the Flyer & the Jetstream ... That said , I would totally buy a full size (10~13") HTC RT tablet ! (gotta have SD card & 3G though) 7~8" i prefer bigger tablets , but if they made one , i might consider it to replace my xoom
  • I think they should make one and call it Windows 8 one lol
  • Lmao blaming MS for their failure. No one wanted their failed Android tablets nobody remembers. Lol. Constantly losing respect for this company.
  • Agree.  They don't have a track record for tablets, period; so they should take baby steps and try a popular form factor (7") and test the waters.  No doubt, it would have a unique design, especially if they incorporate some of the HTC One design principles. 
    If they don't see success with the 7" RT, given that they didn't really have success with the Android tablet, they may reconsider and just stick with phones.
  • HTC should make the HTC 8x more advance model, I have the HTC 8x and it is awesome just wish it had wireless charging for t-mobile and more storage space....
  • Why? That's the same BS they did with One X buyers coming out with the X+ 4 -5 months later. That pissed alot of customers off including me. So what, they should make a 8X+ also? Its that kind of poor judgment that put them in their current state of crisis.
  • I remember a time when HTC used to be very strong selling devices based on the old-school Windows Mobile 6.5. Maybe the biggest mistake that they made was not supporting Microsoft in a deal like the one that had been made with Nokia, which could have happened before. Nokia started from scratch many months after HTC with Windows Phone 7, and today is the king of the ecosystem. On the other hand, Android is responsible for most of HTC's struggle.
  • That wouldn't had mattered if MS was slow on restructuring their OS at the time. Everyone and I mean everyone even Nokia laughed at the iPhone when it dropped and now got everyone scrambling to just climb out of holes except for Samsung and LG.
  • That's because anyone with any sense looked at the iphone and said "yeah, but we've had that for years, and ours is fucking 3g" Then Steve jobs told everyone he had invented fire and the wheel.
  • They don't need to make tablets right now......there are to many out there already
  • How can one abandon a market that one never released a product too????????? That's like saying Microsoft abandoned the hamburger.........
  • HTC did release an Android tablet. It was the HTC Flyer. It didn't sale. Probably one of the reasons Microsoft told them to sit out the RT launch last year. The Flyer had quality issues
  • Honestly I think the tablet market is highly risky for any company, regaurdless of Android or Windows 8/RT.  I've just seen way too many iPad alternatives fail to catch on, aside from the dirt cheap $200 market where only service based comapnies like Amazon and Google can afford such low margins.  So really, if you want to break into the higher end of the tablet market, you have to have the financial resources of a Microsoft in order to stick in it for the long run.  HTC is smart to drop out now and cut what little losses they have thus far.
  • I'm actually happy HTC got out of that. To be honest, I don't think it's a reflection of MS but a reflection on HTC. Honestly, what is HTC? They throw stuff at a wall and hope something will stick, but don't take the time to actually cultivate and support a userbase. Have to have that base to expand. I've had a HTC before, and I got 2 updates over the entire life. And one update made the phone laggy as h*ll. They actually have to take care of their customers if they want to succeed. Could that change with the One? We'll have to wait and see.
  • Man, glad I switched to Nokia with HTC loosing interest in windows.
  • Its sad to see HTC in this situation because they have proven they can make great phones (8X, One, etc) and I am sure they can make an awesome tablet. But the only one to really blame for their situation is themselves. Hopefully they can dig themselves out of the hole that just seems to be getting bigger for them. And they should make a Windows RT tablet in a 7-8inch form factor following the design of the 8x would be irresistible...
  • I have never heard anythig more stupid than what they are saying .
    I am not building a 12 in windows RT Device because no one wants a windows tablet, BUT I will build a 7 in one for I don't know what reason..
    Why don't you just tell everyone not to buy one ..
    What idits
  • Dear HTC, please make a kick ass 3.5" phone and copy the zunehd design down to the last drop. I'll buy it off contract!
  • RT is need for it with Intel Bay Trail coming soon.
  • Yes, the next Intel processor is always going to be the one that makes everything else obsolete. Do you know how many years Intel's marketing people have been spinning that story about what is just around the corner? I can't believe people still actually listen to their processor fairy tales. The next processors will be marginal improvements over the last which were marginal improvements over the previous, etc., etc..They will not run for days nor will they allow you to run PhotoShop on a soc processor at a speed worth using nor will they run cool. Intel will also then blame the hardware manufactuers for not designing to maximize their amazing processors and will blame x86 software developers for not optimizing code. The next processors will not be bad - in fact, they will bring a few improvements. The "they will redefine computing" fantasy though is really quite tiresome at this point and has been for at least a decade.
  • HTC NEEDS to Make a Full Size Tablet with WINDOWS 8 PRO!!!!!!
    Anyone who is going to make a Tablet with Just Windows RT, is just going to be Shooting themselves in their Foot as well as their Pocket.
    Windows RT NOT being a Full Fledged OS has Been turning Off a LOT of People.
    Microsoft had to Listen to the Customers and have a Windows 8 Pro Tablet with 256GB of Storage and 200GB of it Available to the Customer.
    If Microsoft is doing that, "Listening to the Customers" then HTC and Any Other Manufacture MUST do the Same, "LISTEN TO THE CUSTOMERS" to help their Profits.
    HTC Had Made 2 Tablets that HAVE MUCH BETTER AND LOUDER SOUND than ANY OTHER Tablet that Is and Has Been on the Market.
    HTC Can and Must LISTEN to Their Customers!!!!!!
    Make a Tablet that Not Only is Something that Some Customers Want, But Make a TABLET that LOTS of Prospective Customers Both Think and Feel that They NEED MORE than Any Other Manufacturers Devices.
    Make a Tablet that Has the Specs that Are What the Customers Will Choose Your HTC Tablet over Everyone Else's Tablet.
    The Tablet is Both for Work and for Play. Design the Tablet so it Will be the BEST IN BOTH WORLDS!
    One Area that HTC NEEDS to Step their Game is in the ENTERTAINMENT Aspects of the Tablet.
    Make it have a Natural Wide Screen Orientation for Watching Movies on it so the Top and Botom Bars Disappear and also Include the Same Quality or Better Speakers that You had on Both of Your Previous Tablets as well as maybe Including the Subwoofer. And to Top Everything Off and Make Your Tablet Stand Out and Above All the Rest of the Manufacturers, make the SSD ACCESSIBLE so the Customers Can Upgrade it Themselves!
    If YOU "HTC" Do this, then Your Chances of Having an Award Winning Tablet that's Way Better and Way More Desired than Everyone Else's, Will be Drastically Better than Everyone Else's Chances.
    HTC, Build this like this Before Anyone Else does. If Anyone Else Builds a Tablet Like this Before You "HTC", and it is a Solid Hit with the Customers, then You Will be saying "WHY THE HECK DIDN'T WE LISTEN TO WHAT WAS BEING ASKED AND WE BUILD IT FIRST!?"
  • Everyone NEEDS to E-Mail HTC and let HTC know What You All Think, What You All Feel, and Most Important, What You WANT!
    Tell HTC to Wake Up and Start Putting their Creative Teams to WORK! Tell HTC to Make a WINDOWS 8 PRO TABLET and NOT a Windows RT Tablet!
    Make the SSD ACCESSIBLE and also Include a Micro SDXC Card Slot, as well as Having the Great Speakers that HTC put in the HTC FLIER and the HTC JETSTREAM!
    If You Want, then also Copy and Paste My Previous Post as well as Telling HTC Your Own Words.
    If Enough of us Speak Up, then HTC Will Have to LISTEN!
  • 1) Do you really like to shout every few word? If so, there are medications for that sort of thing.
    2) Have you noticed that the 256 GB Surface Pro is only available in one country and it is not even the company's home country? I have also yet to hear any of these hordes of angry people complaining about the inadequacy of the 128GB model. If they add the model elsewhere it makes sense since it is a logical progression of the line, not because of some great public outcry.
    3) If you really believe that if enough people speak up they will listen, there are medications for that as well..
  • You are Entitled to Your Opinion just as I Am Entitled to My Opinion.
    No Medication Needed at all. Just have an Open Mind and UNDERSTAND what it All Means.
  • Last time I checked, unnamed sources do not "announce" anything. It is referred to as a rumor. As to the veracity of the rumor, HTC has failed at Android tablets, Andoid phones, and Windows phones; have had their internal talent (using that phrase loosely) leave in large numbers; and have financials more in line with a company destined for bankruptcy and/or acquisition. Why would anyone really care if they choose to not release another failed product?
  • As far as heralding trouble for MS, the exact same logic could be taken to mean that HTC didn't feel it could compete with the marketing effort for Microsoft's own Surface RT. In that case, while perhaps not great news for Windows RT as a whole, it could still be good for MS' bottom line (perhaps total Surface RT sales and the recent free keyboards to help with sales don't support this).
    Clearly, it would be a better sign if demand were so high that every manufacturer believed they would make lots of money producing a Windows RT product, but in the world where Windows RT is not taking off like a rocket, yet the Surface as a product has been reasonably well received, it just doesn't leave a lot of room for others.
    I think it's great news that HTC is looking at different form factors, though, rather than just pursuing a unit same as the one MS already makes. Seems to me that's what each OEM ought to do -- find their own unique niche and form factor with the OS. Like Dell did with the screen that flips in the external bezel and Lenovo with the Yoga. Whether you like those form factors or not, they are different and innovative.
  • I'm currently using  Android. I really want to give WP8 a spin AND I really, REALLY want an HTC One.
    So, the point I'm making here is that I really, REALLY, REALLY want HTC to release the One running WP8!