According of a recent report on Bloomberg, HTC is said to be "shut out" of the introduction of a Microsoft Windows 8 or Windows RT powered tablet. According to the article, Microsoft locked out HTC from the "development" of Windows 8/Windows RT tablets because "HTC doesn't sell enough devices or have experience making tablets". While Frank Shaw, a spokesman for Microsoft, said in an E-Mail statement that "HTC is a strong partner now and for the future", he declined to discuss specifics. In the meantime, Sally Julien, a U.S.-based spokeswoman at HTC said in an E-Mail, that "HTC intends to support future versions of Windows and isn't commenting on the details of its product plans".
It's really hard to believe that Microsoft cuts off HTC from Windows 8 and Windows RT developments, as said in the Bloomberg article. Maybe they were cut off from initial commercialization but not from development. First of all, HTC is still a strong and important Microsoft supported and I'm sure they have access to all tools which are required to develop a tablet, doesn't matter if Windows 8 or Windows RT. Second, HTC sells more devices that Microsoft's premium partner Nokia, even if the majority of devices are running Android. Last but not least, Nokia has also not a proofed track-record for building Windows-based tablets. In the past, the Finns only introduced one Netbook which ran Windows and that PC was everything but successful as sources told me at that time.
For me it looks more like HTC has lost a little bit the interest in tablets. So far, the Taiwanese have only introduced two Android tablets, the HTC Flyer and the HTC Jetstream but both devices are over a year old and HTC never released any followers. Therefore I would imagine, that HTC put all tablet experiments on hold, especially the experiments with a yet to be released OS which needs to prove first that it will be a success.
UPDATE 07.06.12: HTC just send us a statement where it highlights that "HTC has sold more than 40 million Windows Phones over the last ten years and we are committed to future versions of Microsoft's Windows Phone platform more than ever".
Sure HTC is committed, I think there were no doubts. However, since Microsoft has not yet said that Windows RT is part of the Windows Phone family but rather part of the Windows 8 family, I wonder what HTC wants to tell us with this statement? But maybe it's just me who reads too much between the lines.
Cheers ~ Arne