The HTC Status was launched at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona Spain back in February. It took a little while to actually hit the United States. One of the reasons for the delay was that the Status was originally called the “HTC Cha Cha” and we have a company in the US that does a Q&A website and app called Cha Cha. Of course that didn’t fly well with them so HTC abruptly changed the name to the HTC Status.
When the HTC Status launched a little over 30 days ago, the Facbeook button was the big selling point of this device. The white, Android QWERTY phone features deep Facebook integration surrounded by the blue button. From quick uploading of photos, to quick satus sharing, music sharing, wall writing and more, this phone was the Facebook users dream come true. So why didn’t it catch on?
The HTC Status didn’t have a huge marketing budget, we didn’t see commercials for it the way we do Motorola Droid branded products and even some Samsung Galaxy branded products. Marketing phones to teenagers and social media fanatics is a hard lesson learned by the fall of the Microsoft Kin. Kin banked on the younger set of users who loved social media. Analysts suggested that charging full on data rates to that particular set of customers was a challenge. AT&T did the exact same thing with the HTC Status.
More after the break
AT&T and HTC even teamed up with the band Blink 182, to help carry the phone through a summer tour. That didn’t seem to register with people either.
As TechCrunch points out Facebook never seemed fully engaged in the HTC Status concept. Mark Zuckerberg did a video appearance at HTC’s press conference announcing two Facebook phones during the Mobile World Congress. TechCrunch also points out in all the trips they’ve made to Facebook they’ve never seen an employee using the HTC Status.
It’s been long rumored that Facebook may do their own phone. With over 750,000 users it seems like a smart move, however a partnership with Helio never really helped Myspace out, even with a barrage of commercials on MTV.
One of the final pieces to the demise of the HTC Status is the fact that it’s an Android phone and of course the Android enthusiast (like TDG) is a fan of Google products by proxy. Right around the time the HTC Status launched, Google Plus launched as well.
We actually liked the HTC Status in form factor. Prior to the start of Android I was a Blackberry user and the form factor of the HTC Status is one of the closest to the width, size and keyboard feel of the Blackberry curve.