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Former go-to brand for Android HTC’s fall from grace became even more pronounced in the fourth quarter of 2012, as profits slid to their lowest since 2004.

During the final period of the year, HTC’s unaudited profits were close to £21 million. That represents a slide of 91 per cent from the year-ago-quarter and was well under analysts' projections in the region of £31 million.

Analysts attributed the drop to HTC’s decision to hold back flagship product launches until 2013, as well as consistently stiff competition from arch Android rival Samsung and Apple’s iPhone.

However, that reading wasn't completely shared by HTC CEO Peter Chou who claimed that the weak showing had its origins as much in the company’s efforts to promote their handsets.

Chou told The Wall Street Journal: “Our competitors were too strong and very resourceful, pouring in lots of money into marketing. We haven’t done enough on the marketing front.”

HTC is expected to unveil new handset challengers this week at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, among them its first-ever phablet, the M7.

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