HTC suffers another blow

Smartphone maker HTC is seeing two of its phones blocked by US Customs.

The Taiwanese company has not been doing very well lately and needs to turn around sales in what used to be its largest market.

Sadly, it looks like Apple is using its narrow victory against HTC in a patent lawsuit in December to keep the company out of the market.

HTC said in a statement that the US availability of the HTC One X and HTC EVO 4G LTE has been delayed due to a US Customs review of shipments that is required after an International Trade Commission exclusion order.

The ruling said that HTC phones with the disputed technology would be banned from entering the US from 19 April. What is frustrating for HTC is that the new phones have a work around which does not require Apple’s blessing. However, the shipments still require inspection and this has delayed everything.

Some shipments of the One X model had reached the US before the ban date, enabling the model’s launch, but further shipments are being delayed.

The EVO 4G LTE, which was supposed to be launched on Friday, will also be delayed.

HTC said it believes it is “in compliance with the ruling and HTC is working closely with customs to secure approval”.

Still, it is all pretty bad news for HTC which needs to see things improve fast.

Some analysts are warning that HTC’s problems could get worse. It was expected that general exclusion order from the patent infringement referred only to old HTC models, but there are some indications that all models could be at risk.