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HTC straddles Windows and Android worlds

Speaking at D: All Things Digital, the head of the cell phone maker said that each mobile operating system has its place in the world.

RANCHO PALOS VERDES, Calif.--HTC chief Peter Chou said on Thursday that the company doesn't have to pick sides in the battle between Windows Mobile and Android.

"We are actually committed to both," he said, speaking at the D: All Things Digital conference. "People are different. Different people like different things."

HTC's Peter Chou, speaking Thursday at the D: All Things Digital conference Ina Fried/CNET

Windows has a lot of legacy users, Chou said. "We understand the value of Windows. Windows has a lot of value."

Android, he said, offers a good Internet experience combined with Google's Web services, making it more geared to the social-networking set.

HTC started out making only Windows Mobile devices but these days is at least as well-known for its Android-based phones.

Moderator Walt Mossberg pointed out that HTC grew up making products for other companies under their brand and has become a cell phone brand in its own right. HTC's first big product was building Compaq's iPaq and the company has been making phones since 1999, but Chou said the decision to become its own brand came four years ago.

"It's a great journey for us," he said. "We have been in this industry a long time."

Chou showed off HTC's Android-based Sprint Evo 4G. One feature Mossberg dwelled on was the device's built-in kickstand that lets it stand up for displaying video.

Mossberg questioned whether consumers, though, are yet buying devices because of the HTC brand. At a minimum, consumers are aware of HTC's models, like the Droid Incredible.

"HTC's brand name is getting known," Chou said.

Although it is focused on smartphones and making products for carriers, Chou said that the company has looked at tablets and other areas.

"We are always evaluating new technologies," he said.