As company’s shape worsens, HTC chairwoman imagines different shapes for smartphones


Will mobile computing evolve (or devolve, depending on your view of it) into the shape of something shaped like the Runcible? A rounded disc that looks nothing like the slabs and slates we have today?

HTC chairwoman Cher Wang may or may not think so, but she knows there is a big change ahead. In her keynote speech at MWC 2018 — admittedly undercovered by the mobile tech press as the company’s show floor outlay was mainly dedicated to the more successful Vive VR division rather than its ailing smartphones — Wang made a few comments on how 5G, artificial intelligence and neural processing could change the shape of what we hold today.

HTC has also been splashing this quote (in part) on social media, one that might be indicative of the company’s own hopes for survival:

Smartphones will continue to play a vital part in the ecosystem and will be the first step towards 5G for most of us.

Smartphones may look different from the shiny rectangles we know and love today. I think they will also take on other forms as 5G reduces the need for device-based computing power.

In the future, the screen may be de-coupled away from the smartphone and streamed to our AR/VR devices or even directly projected onto our eyes.

What has been shown in the industry is that if a manufacturer gives an inch away for one component, it will probably get taken up by another component. That or the product just gets slimmer. With smaller chip fabrications coming our way, it’ll have to be up to at least one OEM to decide that something radical has to happen.

As HTC reported its lowest monthly revenues to date, can it find a way to become the change it looks to be?

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About The Author
Jules Wang
Jules Wang is News Editor for Pocketnow and one of the hosts of the Pocketnow Weekly Podcast. He came onto the team in 2014 as an intern editing and producing videos and the podcast while he was studying journalism at Emerson College. He graduated the year after and entered into his current position at Pocketnow, full-time.