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HTC seems to be in a tough spot, as its smartphone chief just announced his resignation effective immediately. Chialin Chang is departing the company to pursue a ‘personal career plan,’ and HTC has yet to appoint a replacement.
( Josep Lago | Getty Images )
HTC is losing its smartphone chief as Chialin Chang, the company’s President for the Smartphone and Connected Devices Business, announces his resignation effective immediately.
The executive’s decision to leave the company leaves HTC in a tough spot and no replacement is yet official.
Chang cited a “personal career plan” as the reason for leaving HTC, without going into any details.
HTC Smartphone Chief Resigns
Throughout the years, Chang was the company’s Chief Financial Officer, and also served as HTC’s head of global sales from 2013 until 2017. HTC saw many executives depart and Chang was among the few veterans left.
On the other hand, Chang’s position with HTC was no longer as relevant as it used to be. HTC sold a large portion of its smartphone engineering and design team to Google in a $1.1 billion deal.
No Replacement Yet For HTC’s Chialin Chang
HTC has yet to appoint a replacement for Chang and until it does, it’s likely that CEO and Chairwoman Cher Wang will take over most of Chang’s duties and responsibilities. While Chan was rather evasive regarding his career plans once he leaves HTC, some reports indicate that the executive aims to launch an AI start-up sometime this year.
What’s Next For HTC?
Despite selling off most of its smartphone business to Google, HTC is not leaving the smartphone scene. The company is still expected to release a flagship smartphone this year, likely coming as the HTC U12, boasting a dual camera setup and high-end specs all around.
HTC may not launch its next flagship at the upcoming Mobile World Congress 2018 later this month, but it should formally unveil it shortly afterward. The handset should then go on sale sometime in March or April, competing at the high-end segment of the smartphone market.
With Chang now leaving the company, it remains unclear what will come of HTC’s smartphone business after the new flagship hits the scene. Some speculate that the HTC U12 might be the company’s last flagship, but nothing is confirmed at this point.
A few years back, HTC was one of the most popular smartphone makers, getting high praise for the design and quality of its HTC One (M7) and (M8) smartphones. The company lost significant ground to rivals in recent years, however, and despite its efforts to catch up and get back on top, it’s still struggling to return to its glory days.
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