March 1, 2009 | by Andrew Kameka
How powerful is Google Android? Powerful enough to help make HTC nearly double its workforce while other corporations announced massive layoffs. HTC increased its workforce 46 percent — now totaling 9,353 employees — even as global economic woes inspired companies to gut much of their payroll rosters.
Quickly jumping into the Android device market, while other companies took a wait and see approach, proved to be a wise choice by HTC. Adding to its already solid base as a manufacturer of Windows Mobile devices, the T-Mobile G1 performed well enough in the U.S. and U.K. to boost HTC’s performance. The Taiwanese company increased revenues 29 percent in 2008.
An analyst at Macquarie Group Ltd., estimates that HTC will release as many as five new Android phones this year, but doesn’t offer any explanation for how he came to that number. We already know that HTC will release the HTC Magic on Vodafone soon and may launch an identical device for T-Mobile later this year. It’s a guessing game to determine which handsets from HTC’s leaked product line will have Android as an OS.
This news probably won’t inspire any company that wasn’t already thinking of developing for Android, but it may cause some to add more resources to those projects. Samsung and LG have already promised to deliver Android phones this year, and Motorola, facing a rough financial outlook, indicated last year they would invest heavily in their projects. That means 2009 may be a very prolific year for Google Android.