Taiwan-based HTC saw surging sales and profits in its fiscal second quarter, thanks to the strength of its ever-expanding smartphone lineup. And given the rate at which HTC is releasing new phones that run Google's Android OS, the numbers should be seen as yet another triumph for Google and the explosive growth of Android, too.
HTC on Tuesday reported earnings of 8.64 billion New Taiwan dollars (about $268 million), up 33 percent from from NT$6.51 billion (about $202 million) a year earlier. It was the highest quarterly profit HTC has reported since the fourth quarter of 2007, according to The Wall Street Journal.
On the revenue side, HTC reported NT$60.53 billion in the quarter, up 58 percent from NT$38.20 a year earlier.
Analysts expect HTC's smartphone shipments to continue to rise. One observer, Yuanta Securities' Bonnie Chang, told the Journal that HTC should hit 20 million units shipped by the end of the year -- a sizeable jump, if it happens, from the 12 million HTC shipped in 2009.
Some of HTC's biggest successes, especially in North America, have been with new and feature-loaded Google Android phones, such as the HTC Droid Incredible, carried by Verizon, and the HTC EVO 4G, carried by Sprint. Along with other HTC-made phones like the Google Nexus One and the HTC Aria (and the Windows Mobile-based HTC HD2), both the Incredible and the EVO 4G ranked among CRN.com's 10 Coolest Smartphones of 2010, So Far.
Other phone manufacturers have also gone big with Android: Motorola with its eight-month-old Droid and forthcoming Droid X, and Samsung, with its Galaxy S line.
Research firm Gartner has predicted that Android-based phones will pass phones running Apple's iOS platform by 2012 and move into the second-place spot worldwide behind phones running Nokia Symbian.