HTC to Merge VR and Smartphone Divisions as President of Smartphones Resigns

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Chialin Chang, HTC’s President of Smartphone and Connected Devices Business, has made his resignation official, bringing with it a melding of the company’s smartphone and VR divisions—a move that possibly points to the HTC putting greater focus on VR in the face of the company’s waning smartphone business.

HTC told Engadget that Chang stepped down from his 6-year stint at the company to pursue his “personal career plan,” exactly what that entails, we’re not sure at this time.

According to a report by China-based tech publication YiVian, five general managers, most of whom oversaw VR divisions in the company, will be taking charge of both smartphone and VR business moving forward in their respective regions.

  • Daniel O’Brien, GM of HTC VIVE Americas, is now GM of HTC Americas.
  • Alvin Wang Graylin, GM of HTC VIVE China, is now GM of HTC China.
  • Raymond Pao, VP of HTC VR New Technology, is now GM of North Asia.
  • Paul Brown, GM of HTC VIVE Europe, is now GM of HTC Europe.
  • Chen(陈柏谕), GM of HTC smartphone Taiwan, is now GM of HTC Taiwan.

HTC’s smartphone business has been struggling in face of big names such as Samsung, Apple, and the growing Chinese brand Huawei, but now that HTC is promoting VR execs to greater places of power, it could signal a decisive repositioning of HTC from a smartphone-first company to a primarily VR-first company. Considering HTC recently sold off much of its smartphone team to Google in a $ 1.1 billion deal, which saw half of HTC’s smartphone R&D division transferred to Google, they’ll need VR more than ever.

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