HTC denies it is moving away from Android

The patent deal between HTC and Apple doesn't mean HTC will lessen its focus on Google's Android OS, HTC Americas president Mike Woodward said yesterday.

HTC and Apple last week signed a 10-year deal immunising the smartphone makers against each others' patent claims, a deal which Wall Street analyst Shaw Wu said came out to $6-8 (around £4.40) per HTC phone. That led some observers to speculate HTC might be shifting its focus from Android to Microsoft's Windows Phone OS.

"It's clearly a positive event," Woodward said of the Apple deal. "Anything that eliminates distractions would be positive ... but our strategy is to lead in Android [and] to lead in Windows Phone."

For now, Android also lets HTC realise its software dreams more effectively than Windows Phone. Several of HTC's "Image Sense" camera features, including continuous shooting, are only available on Android devices and not the Windows Phone-based HTC 8X. That may change in the future, though, Woodward said, and HTC is working on bringing both that and other features to Windows Phone devices.

Financially, the Taiwanese firm has been struggling a little recently. Its most recent quarterly results, released in October, show net income at $137 million (£86 million), less than analysts expected and less than in the previous quarter. The latest round of Windows 8 releases could start to turn that around, Woodward said.

"I think you're seeing a manifestation of that strategy happening right now. There are really two big series of launches going on at the moment," he said. "One is Windows Phone 8, and Windows 8 in general. We think we have the leading Windows Phone 8 device ... and in the Android market, between the Droid DNA and the One X+, we think we have the leading edge there as well."