Taiwan phone manufacturer HTC is putting $300 million on the line for new technology that should improve the audio quality of their high end smartphones. According to a story from CNN.com, the company is purchasing majority shares in Beats Electronics, a company – co-owned by Andre “Dr. Dre” Young and Jimmy Lovine, record producer – that designs audio equipment.
The goal, HTC CEO Peter Chou told The Wall Street Journal is to incorporate this technology into the high-end Android phones to improve the quality of music sound. “With the magic of mobile devices, it is easier than ever to discover and buy new music. However, without a great sound experience, it is a shame,” Chou told AllThingsD in an interview Aug. 10. He added that this is the most recent in a progression of moves planned to make sound better in electronics.
“We went to digital and got worse,” he said, according to AllThingsD. “That’s unacceptable. What has to happen is anyone who makes consumer electronics that transmits music has to be encouraged – to put it mildly – to have great audio. “
There are questions, based on consumer responses to computers and other music-related digital products, about whether superior sound quality from devices is a priority for the end user. CNN.com reports that HP’s deal with Beats to include enhanced audio in a line of laptops did not result in better sales. According to CNN.com, HP reported it took 16 months to sell 1 million Beats enhanced systems, a number they normally sell in 16 days.
Chou is not deterred. “We need to continue to innovate and have products that differentiate and make more of an emotional connection with the consumer,” he told The New York Times.