HTC has launched a new program called the HTC Advantage
, this program is not really anything drastic in the way that the company treats their customers, but it is a better way for them to tout their advantage. First and foremost, the HTC Advantage program itself started yesterday on February 18th. This is important to note because the most important part of the program is also its more complicated and could be misunderstood by some.
The HTC Advantage program allows you to get your HTC One (Mini, regular or Max) screen replaced for free within the first 6 months of owning the phone. But, you can only make use of this program if you bought your HTC One phone starting yesterday. So, if you bought your phone on the 17th, go 'return' it and get a new receipt for it because now you have a free 6 month warranty on your phone's screen. In the 6 months that I had the HTC One, however, I never really needed to protect the screen. In fact, after many drops of the HTC one, the screen was probably the most infallible and sturdiest part of the phone. Sure, I mostly used cases with this phone, but when I didn't most of the damage was to the aluminum body and not the screen. I think HTC knows this, so offering a 6 month warranty for screen breakage isn't so bad for them and its great PR and marketing.
I can only imagine how many iPhone users they could convert who have had to replace their smartphone's screens and hated the fact that they had for fork over another $150. Anyways, if HTC doesn't actively market this Advantage program, then it's almost worthless. Kind of like the HTC One's being better than the Galaxy S4, yet HTC waited far too long to actually market it to consumers. Another part of this program is something that HTC has kind of already been doing, and that's releasing timely Android updates to their phones shortly after Google releases them and continuing to support them for at least 2 years. Not only that, but they have been very open about when users can expect the updates and transparent about expectations, time frames, and even delays. I wouldn't consider this a major thing since the company is already doing it, but it is important that they make sure consumers are aware of this fact.
The third and final part of the HTC Advantage is their cloud storage that they give you for free with your phone. When I got the HTC One it was 25 GB of free Dropbox storage. Now, it appears, HTC has switched to Google Drive storage and will now be offering between 25 GB and 50 GB depending on the model of the phone. While HTC hasn't exactly said what devices this is for, I suspect the 50 GB will be for the newer devices launching this year and 25 GB for the older devices launched last year. We will contact them to get clarification, but it could also be a high-end/mainstream difference that could also explain the 25 GB and 50 GB differences. Either way, nobody is going to complain about free cloud storage, especially 50 GB of it.
Hopefully HTC will properly market this Advantage program and make consumers aware of the value added proposition when buying an HTC phone. I'm not sure how they will properly market it, but I don't think their Robert Downey Junior campaign will help.
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