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Wednesday, February 15, 2017
Asustek Aims At Growth In Smartphone And Notebook Business

Asustek Computer aims to outperform the industry average this year, while expanding its smartphone business.

"The notebook industry will continue to deteriorate, but we are hoping we will do better than the industry average," Asustek Chief Executive Jerry Shen told analysts during a conference.

Shen said that he is hoping the company's convertible notebooks, which can also be used as tablets, will help it achieve that goal in 2017.

Asustek overtook Apple as the No. 4 brand in the global PC market in 2016 by market share, behind Lenovo, HP and Dell, according to research firm IDC.

Asustek has been trying to branch out into mobile gadgets and emerging products including home robots and virtual reality applications to offset headwinds in the personal computer segment.

Shen said his company generated more revenue last year from smartphones than in 2015, boosted by a rise in the average selling price due to the release of premium handsets. Shen said the company's smartphone revenue growth will continue this year, without providing specific numbers.

Chief Financial Officer Nick Wu said that Asustek is aiming for profitability in its smartphone business in 2017.

Asustek's executives also said that the company has delayed its annual launch of a flagship smartphone from April to July at the latest, mainly due to a quarter-long shortage in key components.

The affected components include DRAM, flash memory and flat panels that are used in both notebooks and smartphones, Asustek said.

The company in November last year had said that it hoped to launch its next-generation ZenFone in April this year at the earliest, in an effort to maintain sales momentum, as the ZenFone 3 series product life cycle dissipates toward the end of the first half.

Shen addec that he hopes Asustek will be able deliver its own all-in-one virtual reality devices later this year, but did not provide details.

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