Finally. The status of HTC’s long-awaited smartwatch is known.
A batch of images showing the HTC-made smartwatch leaked online a couple of days ago. The device shown didn’t appear like a consumer-ready device, and we even noted that it’s likely a prototype was obtained and shared. Remember that rumors and reports surrounding the smartwatch have been around for years. On top of that, the smartwatch’s bezel looked like plastic and not very characteristic of HTC.
We’re learning today the Halfbeak, which is what the company has called the device internally, is no longer in development. An HTC executive confirmed the news in an interview with Tbreak.
Here’s what HTC’s Chialin Chang said:
“I can tell you that we’re not going to have an Android watch. I don’t think we’ve nailed it with [the experience of] watches. An Android watch is one thing but even Apple as a big brand is declining [in watches]. We are not going to have a watch in the short term.”
It’s understandable why HTC doesn’t want to be involved in smartwatches right now. The market’s initial hype is gone, and hardware sales haven’t been viable for many companies. In the second half of 2016, Android Wear’s partners halted production to reevaluate the market. Now, in 2017, Google is planning to lead the way for Android Wear-powered devices to become popular again. Maybe partners new and old will return to Android Wear and smartwatches if Google proves it can be successful.