HTC One build process will appear in future HTC designs

Despite troubles and slow production rates for the HTC One, HTC says it will continue to use its metal unibody process for future HTC phones.

Seamus Byrne Editor, Australia & Asia
Seamus Byrne is CNET's Editor for Australia and Asia. At other times he'll be found messing with apps, watching TV, building LEGO, and rolling dice. Preferably all at the same time.
Seamus Byrne
Justin Huang, Senior Manager Design and Innovation at HTC Labs. Seamus Byrne/CNET

HTC is absolutely committed to using the metal process it developed for building the HTC One, Justin Huang, senior manager of design and innovation at HTC Lab, told CNET at an event Wednesday in Bangkok.

The build process has been labelled as one of the factors that caused delays in the HTC One, which in turn played a role in HTC's poor performance through the first half of 2013.

The first three steps in HTC's unibody build process. Seamus Byrne/CNET

But Huang feels they now have the process working very well and at scale. While each single handset is technically in the build process for two hours, 700 handsets are produced at a time in a "box" and there are in turn many boxes being produced at a time.

"Now that it has been worked through the first time, we will continually use this process for future phones and designs," Huang said.

Upcoming rumored handsets such as the HTC One Mini and Max, and an upcoming red HTC One launching soon in some territories, are the obvious adaptations to the unibody build process.

But Huang's mention of future "designs" suggests it is about more than just different sizes and colours of the current design. While the HTC Butterfly S uses a plastic casing married with flagship technical specifications this is not a sign of a step back from the HTC One's metal design and we can expect more metal designs from HTC in future.