htc one m8 outdoors (4 of 17)

David Croyle, the man behind the designs of the HTC One (M8) and every other smartphone in HTC’s One line will soon be leaving the company.

Croyle led HTC’s design team since the manufacturer acquired his One & Co studio back in 2008. During that time his team designed arguably the most attractive smartphones in the past few years. Croyle isn’t just abruptly leaving, though. HTC told The Verge that Croyle’s departure is a “long-term transition” that will see him take on the role of consultant for the next few months as his replacement takes over his position.

Croyle will leave the company to work on a wider range of projects. There’s no word on what those projects might be, but hopefully we’ll see more of his designs whenever they’re ready.

Jonah Becker, Croyle’s second in command, will likely take over as head of the company’s design team in San Francisco.

HTC also promoted Drew Bamford from his position as head of Sense user experience to head of all software and services. The move could be a sign that HTC is trying to simplify its teams through consolidation.

While HTC has consistently produced great-looking devices, it does have its fair share of problems. The phones don’t sell nearly as well as Samsung’s Galaxy devices, and Croyle is just the latest major executive to leave the company. According to GeekWire, Ford Davidson, who joined HTC when it bought his company Dashwire, is also leaving the manufacturer to work on his own projects, potentially to found a new startup.

The executive churn and poor sales aren’t good signs for HTC, especially as it heads into new categories like wearables which haven’t yet proven incredibly successful for any company. Maybe Becker can help keep design a consistent strong point for the company, and Bamford can help make the user experience better. But is that enough?

Are you confident in HTC’s ability to keep going forward given the recent changes?

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