HTC Windows phone 8X, left, and 8S. (Photo/Chen Hsin-han)
Taiwan's HTC remains the fifth-largest mobile phone maker in the United States but has lost market share to Samsung and Apple, according to data compiled recently by the research firm comScore.
In a survey of more than 30,000 US mobile subscribers from August to October, the research firm found that Samsung was the top handset manufacturer overall, with a market share of 26.3%, up from 25.6% in the May-July period.
For the first time on record, Apple ranked second with a 17.8% market share, up 1.5%age points from the previous three months.
Next in line were LG Electronics Inc. with a 17.6% share, Motorola Mobility Holdings Inc. with 11%, and HTC with 6%.
Android device makers Motorola, LG and HTC all lost market share, dropping by 0.8, 0.2 and 0.4 percentage points, respectively, according to the survey.
Jeff Pu, an equity research analyst at Taipei-based Fubon Securities, said in a report last week that HTC was set to regain market share in the US with the launch of its flagship Droid DNA on Nov. 14 through US mobile operator Verizon Wireless.
The Fubon report forecast that shipments of Droid DNA will reach 1 million units by the end of the year. It also noted that another US carrier AT&T was offering the Windows 8-powered HTC 8X phone at a cost as low as US$99.99.
"We believe these positive developments indicate that HTC's settlement with Apple has opened up a window to regain market share in the US market," said Pu.
He raised the stock's target price to NT$310 (US$10.7) from NT$270 (US$9.28).
Fubon forecast HTC's shipments in the US will reach 8.6 million units this year and 10.2 million units next year, representing a 19% annualized growth.
HTC and Apple agreed in November to settle their global patent disputes through the dismissal of all current lawsuits and a 10-year license agreement, ending a legal battle that had been running since March 2010.
The license extends to current and future patents held by both parties, they said in a joint statement.
Analysts said the settlement would give HTC a greater advantage in its market positioning in the US after an import ban on its products in May this year due to a ruling on infringement on patents claimed by Apple.
HTC shares closed up 0.19% at NT$266.5 (US$9.16) Monday on the local bourse.