Is HTC finally getting its long wished for Nexus prominence? According to a recent tip, supposedly supported by well-known leak source Upleaks, HTC has just signed a contract with Google to be the maker of Nexus devices, most likely smartphones, for three years. Of course, Google never reveals such details until announcement day itself, so there’s little to support that speculation. If true, however, it could be the marketing break that HTC desperately needs. Or, conversely, it could spell disaster for the Nexus line instead.
It’s not really unheard of for a single OEM to make Nexus devices for three years straight. LG already proved that could happen with the Nexus 4, 5, and 5X, though it probably never crossed anyone’s mind that there would be a three-year contract involved. The presumption is that Google changes Nexus partners every year and LG is just the very rare exception.
Such a deal, however, would be very beneficial for HTC, at least as far as publicity is concerned. While the device will of course be marketed under Google’s name, who made the device never escapes the public’s attention. The Nexus 6P helped put Huawei on the map, especially in the US. But that was mainly because the Nexus 6P was a well-made smartphone by its own right.
HTC’s flagships haven’t exactly been terrible but they have been rather disappointing at best. The premium design of the previous HTC Ones is not one you can easily dismiss. Features and specs, however, HTC hasn’t been unable to match those of its biggest rivals. And let’s not even get into cameras.
One thing’s for sure, making a Nexus for three years isn’t going to help HTC’s thinning coffers. LG has repeatedly emphasized how Nexus devices aren’t money makers, as they aren’t exactly manufactured for mass sales. And with Google rumored to want to exert even more control over the Nexus design and manufacturing process, things could actually turn the worse for HTC. But when you’re a company seen to be struggling in the smartphone market, any break will have to do.