Each brand has its own group of loyal fans and customers but, sometimes, smaller brands have the advantage of being able to connect and build a relationship with that group on a more personal level. Back at the height of its popularity, HTC was one such brand that wanted to have a special and exclusive place for true fans. Now that place has shut down and its timing right after news of the company’s dismal 2019 earnings only adds fodder to rumors of its own inevitable demise.
Launching in 2012, HTC Elevate may just be one of the oldest running VIP clubs for smartphone phone fans, back when smartphones may have still been considered a fad. The forum had strict requirements to maintain activity and rewarded members with freebies and chances to attend product launches. Now it has almost silently closed down the program without any explanation or even a warning beforehand.
Shutting down a program is nothing shocking and is totally within the program owner’s rights but you’d presume that a VIP program would at least give members a heads up first. Then again, HTC Elevate may no longer have such members to speak of in the first place if the number of die-hard HTC fans have dwindled to almost zero.
That, of course, doesn’t mean there are zero HTC fans, just not enough fans willing to remain active enough to be in that exclusive club. This, in turn, indirectly suggests that the number of HTC users and fans have likewise diminished significantly. As if sales figures aren’t enough of a hint.
Given eight continuous years of losses, it’s not hard to see this development as yet another nail on HTC’s coffin. At this point, it will take a miracle, and more than a blockchain phone, to save HTC’s mobile business.