HTC set to abandon bundling Beats headphones with smartphones £1899

10th Apr 2012 | 18:25

HTC set to abandon bundling Beats headphones with smartphones

Despite recent acquisition, HTC decides against giving away Beats buds with future releases

TechRadar rating:

3.5 stars

There's a lot more to the Envy 14 Beats Edition than just good sound quality. This is an extremely powerful notebook, both in terms of everyday and graphical performance, and it provides the sort of power we'd expect from a much larger desktop replacement machine. The notebook is also portable, making it a genuine option as a travelling companion.


Great sound quality Bundled Beats Solo headphones Black rubber chassis finish Very powerful across the board Usability and portability


Screen resolution could be higher Lack of VGA out is a problem Frenzy inducing touchpad £400 more than the original Envy 14 Overkill Beats branding on the lid

HTC is unlikely to bundle future smartphones with expensive Beats Audio headphones.

The Taiwanese manufacturer acquired a majority stake in Beats for $300m (around £190m) last year.

It soon began including headphones and integrating Beats audio technology within handsets like the Sensation XL and Rezound.

However, HTC seems to have has concluded that, regardless of how good the headphones on offer, consumers aren't necessarily influenced when it comes to buying smartphones.

HTC product executive Martin Fichter told CNET: "An accessory like the headphone doesn't factor in when someone is buying a smartphone. If they want a Beats headphone, they'll buy it directly."

What's the plan now then?

It was thought that HTC's decision to shell-out a fortune on a 51 per cent share of the company made famous by the fashionable over-ear Dr Dre Monster Beats cans, was part of a bigger plan.

The company had begun to include Beats technology within its handsets, including the new HTC One S, in a bid to improve the underwhelming sound quality on an overwhelming number of Android smartphones.

It had even been reported that the company was plotting to buy or launch its own Spotify-like subscription music service to be part of its HTC Sense ecosystem.

Perhaps those things will still come to fruition, but with HTC's profits way down on last year, it's understandable that it would steer away from giving away expensive headphones, when it makes little difference to sales.


Beats HTC
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