HTC have, in my opinion, been leaders in mobile information technology since it’s very inception in the 90’s. High-end, high cost products aimed squarely at the business professional – a teenage boys spy gadget dream. The Touch Pro and Universal are prime examples of the influence of James Bond in early consumer culture.
The devices were loved by modders and amassed communities of developers, testers and end users contributing to the advancement and longevity of these individual devices on both the original Windows Mobile software they shipped with and various other OSes. That longevity almost inevitably culminated in a gathering of android Rom modded by the plentiful and clever folk at XDA Developers, some designed to dual boot from SD card and others to wipe out the original software (nand).
Those were the days running Jellybean on the Touch hd2 or ICS on the Touch Pro II, both originally running Windows Mobile 5 or 6 these devices are just two of my own personal experiences made unique by android and pretty much completely useful on a day to day basis. Not only that, but these phones were so much better once they were freed from the hideous winmo.
Wasn’t all that long ago either.
The fortunes of HTC as a company are well documented. Like a rollercoaster they climbed and dipped through the years, strangely as perhaps the longest established mobile tech manufacturer out there. Though the earliest phones from the company were largely forgettable due to the horrible early windows mobile and the first Google phones; the HTC dream, hero and magic were quite expensive and poor when compared to the first Apple iphone, HTC quickly flooded the market with a sway of well made hardware just waiting for the software to catch up on it.
The above three handsets were still playing catch up to the iPhone and iphone 3g at this time, no shame in that as they were the best options in terms of quality and communities were abuzz with ‘Jailbreaking’ (the first time i had heard the term). Fast forward a couple of years, with the arrival of the One X the game seemed to change, iPhone could no longer compete in desirability stakes with android now reaching 4.0/4.1 version and bigger screens at the top of most users wish lists HTC’s main rival was now Samsung and i hope no believe with the 10, HTC may have reignited that.
An HTC One retrospective http://www.androidcentral.com/htc-one-retrospective