Martin Fichter, The President of HTC America, gave us some of his valuable insight today when he commented on the current mobile landscape and exactly where his and other Android OEM’s stand against rival Apple and their iPhone. Apparently, Fichter feels that the iPhone just isn’t “cool” anymore. Not when compared to all the 4.53-inch behemoths and quad-core megaphones being released these days. According to Fichter, the mobile market has been saturated with high-end and low-end iPhones and because of this, the device has lost its cool factor. All the hipsters these days are now using HTC. At the Mobile Future Forward conference in downtown Seattle, Martin Fichter had this to say:
“Apple is innovating. Samsung is innovating. We are innovating. Everybody is innovating. And everybody is doing different things for the end consumers. I brought my daughter back to college — she’s down in Portland at Reed — and I talked to a few of the kids on her floor. And none of them has an iPhone because they told me: ‘My dad has an iPhone.’ There’s an interesting thing that’s going on in the market. The iPhone becomes a little less cool than it was. They were carrying HTCs. They were carrying Samsungs. They were even carrying some Chinese manufacture’s devices. If you look at a college campus, Mac Book Airs are cool. iPhones are not that cool anymore. We here are using iPhones, but our kids don’t find them that cool anymore.”
Has the iPhone really become so mainstream because of its “dumbed down” OS that it has officially become the phone for the older (read: senior citizen) generation? Despite being an Android advocate myself, I’m not so sure I can digest what Mr. Fichter is cooking. Working at Best Buy Mobile for a few months, I’ve always got the impression that customers were choosing HTC and Samsung Android devices based solely on the fact that they were cheaper and more affordable alternatives than the iPhone. It wasn’t by choice — but necessity. But I guess if nothing else, this statement today gives us a little more insight as to why HTC chose a joint venture with Beats Audio. Guess, they’re really looking to take that “hip” crown from the iPhone.
If you ask me, it’s Android that is a lot less “hip.” Seeing how mainstream the OS has become. But who needs “cool” when we have nerd-credibility. The Android modding community seems to be a quickly growing movement these days. That’s just my honest opinion but hey, I’m no HTC exec. What do you guys think?