An HTC spokesperson has revealed the company is currently working on a new tablet, and it will be the first to launch in the UK since the Flyer last year. HTC followed up the Flyer with the Jetstream, but due to it only being available with 4G LTE, it has never left the USA.
Speaking to PCAdvisor.co.uk, the spokesperson said the device will have a “unique selling point,” but doesn’t expand on what it may be. The Flyer is notable due to its Scribe stylus, which pre-dates Samsung’s introduction of the S-Pen.
The timing is interesting, as the news comes shortly after HTC was shunned by Microsoft and not given the go-ahead to build a Windows RT tablet. The reason, according to Microsoft, was inexperience in the market.
With Windows RT off the table, HTC will most likely stick with Android for its new tablet, and depending on when it’s set to launch, it could run Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. Knowing HTC, it’s likely to be obscured by the HTC Sense user interface though.
But if whatever tablet HTC has up its sleeve is a response to it being left off the Windows RT invitation list, then it’ll need to be something more than just a Flyer 2.
Vertex reborn, a Nexus 7 challenger, or something different?
At the beginning of the year, rumors suggested HTC had a quad-core tablet all ready for launch at Mobile World Congress. Known as the Quattro, it later became the Vertex, and was said to have a Nvidia Tegra 3 chip, a 10.1-inch, 720p screen and Beats Audio. The OS was expected to be Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich.
The Vertex never arrived, and HTC’s tablet strategy changed. At the beginning of the year, in a conversation with IntoMobile.com, the company said it was going to “rethink” how it approached tablets, and needed to “differentiate” itself from the competition. This certainly fits in with the cautious approach hinted at by PCAdvisor.co.uk’s source.
Will HTC follow Amazon and Google with a cut-price tablet? It looks like the Kindle Fire approach is going to be the fashion this year, and HTC does have its own movie streaming service HTC Watch, and there has been talk of a free streaming music service too. We’re also expecting new and improved cloud options from HTC, following the acquisition of SyncTV and the closure of HTCSense.com.
While this is all possible, it’s nothing different from the competition, and if HTC wants to find itself invited to future Microsoft parties, and make a go of it in the tablet world, it may need to do something a little more innovative.