It's no secret that Taiwanese smartphone manufacturer HTC has been going through tough times in the past few years, struggling to compete against both established names in the business and Chinese upstarts like Lenovo, Huawei, and Xiaomi. Its recent virtual reality efforts, in the form of the Vive VR headset built in collaboration with Valve, have however garnered critical acclaim.
It is in this scenario that HTC is reported by Taiwanese media to be considering spinning off its VR division. Another report out of Taiwan also claims HTC has seen very dismal sales of its latest flagship smartphone - the HTC 10 - in China, the biggest smartphone market in the world.
Focus Taiwan reports that HTC has managed to sell only 251 units of the HTC 10 in China during the pre-order period that began with Tmall and Jingdong Mall on April 25. The report attributes the low demand to HTC's decision to introduce the Snapdragon 652 SoC-powered variant of the HTC 10 in China, known as the HTC 10 Lifestyle, managing to alienate potential customers.
(Also see: HTC 10 'Global' Variant Headed to India, Says Company)
The same publication in a separate report says HTC has confirmed it has set up a new company for development of VR technology. HTC is said to have issued the statement as a response to other local media reports that the Taiwanese firm had formed the VR company late last year. It did not confirm whether it was considering spinning off the company, as local media also reported.
The new VR company when spun off will reportedly be controlled entirely by HTC Chairwoman Cher Wang. It currently operates in several domains as per government data cited by the report, including "the sale of computer equipment, information software, electronics material and precision machinery, and telecom equipment development, as well as online retail sales." The report adds the new company is also involved in international trade and warehousing business.