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HTC taps Robert Downey Jr. for new ad campaign

HTC is tapping some star power to help flagging sales. To take care of business they’ve turned to someone who knows a thing or two about comebacks — Robert Downey Jr.

The Taiwanese smartphone maker said Monday that the actor has signed a two-year deal as spokesman for its “Here’s To Change” campaign. According to a release from the company, Downey not only stars in the spots but has also “injected his own style” into the advertisements.

What, exactly, does that mean? Well, let the teaser speak for itself:

The first full ad in the campaign will roll out on Aug. 15 over YouTube, and will also appear on television and in movie theaters. The ads are part of a larger “brand platform” HTC is launching, called Change, that aims to highlight the company’s “disruptive impact on the mobile industry over its 17-year history.”

HTC is in need of a sales boost. Despite strong reviews for its latest HTC One smartphone, the company is still having trouble competing — overall — with Apple, and with other phone manufacturers such as Samsung, who also build phones on Google’s mobile Android operating system.

The firm reported last month that its profits had fallen over 80 percent, in line with guidance the company offered earlier in the month. And while the company announced that the HTC One had sold better than previous flagship models in the same period of time, it still projected an operating loss for the third quarter of 2013 — a first for the firm.

HTC has said that it’s focusing on building out the middle-tier of its products, rather than on its more-recent strategy of focusing its efforts on a single flagship model such as the HTC One.

Hayley Tsukayama covers consumer technology for The Washington Post.



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