HTC Advantage debuts with broken screen protection for US customers

Sadly, this post benefits us Canadians in limited ways, but it’s worth noting that HTC wants to up its customer service game in 2014.

Today, the biggest issue with HTC isn’t its hardware but its distribution. The company is often overshadowed by the deep pocketbooks of its competitors’ marketing, retail and PR campaigns, which has lead to limited success in North America since 2011.

Part of what we discussed last week was HTC’s commitment to keeping its flagship devices upgraded with the latest version of Android for two years; this extends to the HTC One and One mini, but will also affect any devices released this year and next. Another aspect of the HTC Advantage, as the company is calling it, is US-only for now, but we hope it migrates north quickly: free screen replacement for the first six months of ownership. Announced today, HTC plans to replace, free of charge, the broken screens of any One, One mini or One max, for six months from the day of purchase. This only affects newly-purchased devices, so existing owners are out of luck, but the insurance is free.

The program is summed up thusly: “Our mission is to reward those that buy the very best by treating them as well on day 500 as the day they walk out of the store.” Many Android devices have been abandoned, often less than a year from release, by their manufacturers, often because they drop down the priority list, and because among the many devices they make, the support costs are too high.

HTC also commits to adding 25-50GB of Google Drive storage for each device, a change from the Dropbox partnership that shipped with the One X and, subsequently, the One.

There’s no word on whether the screen replacement program will come to Canada, but all other tenets of the Advantage, including upgrade commitments, apply. The HTC One was recently updated to KitKat, while the One mini is still on Android 4.2.2, and will skip 4.3 to arrive at 4.4.2 in “late February,” according to a Rogers OS upgrade post.