HTC sees Q1 revenue flat to 17% lower vs Q4
The former contract manufacturer's fortunes have been declining sharply since the second half of 2011, as the growing dominance of Apple Inc's iPhone and Samsung Electronics Co Ltd's Galaxy range quickly deflated the success of its own brand's rapid rise.
HTC said on Monday that it expects first-quarter revenue of T$50 billion to T$60 billion ($1.69-2.03 billion). That compares with T$60 billion in the fourth quarter and T$65.75 billion a year ago.
Analysts have forecast HTC would earn revenue of T$62.77 billion for the quarter, according to the average projection of 18 analysts polled by Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
HTC also said it expects a first-quarter gross margin of about 21 to 23 percent, flat to lower from 23 percent in the prior quarter, and an operating margin of 0.5 to 1.0 percent, also flat to lower from 1 percent.
The weaker-than-expected first-quarter revenue outlook follows a 91 percent year-on-year slide in the Taiwanese company's net profit in the fourth quarter that fell short of analyst forecasts.
Analysts doubt that 2013 will be a turnaround year for HTC as the strength of its brand lags far behind Apple and Samsung.
But some have said that the next version of its flagship smartphone, code-named "M7" and which they expect to be launched in the middle of this month in New York and London,
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