Taiwanese smartphone maker HTC said today it swung to a profit in the third quarter, but revenue continued to decline owing to sluggish sales amid strong competition from low-priced Chinese models. 

HTC reported a net profit of Tw$640m ($21m) in July-September from a net loss of Tw$2.97 billion in the same period last year. 

Revenue in this period came in at Tw$41.86 billion, down 11% on-year and 36% on the previous quarter. It was also lower than a forecast of between Tw$42 billion and Tw$47 billion, a company statement said.

HTC has said that sales were expected to slow as initial excitement over its new products wore off. 

The company's second quarter net profit was up 80% on-year and much improved from a net loss of Tw$1.88 billion in the first quarter, aided by good slaes of HTC One M8 and Desire 816 models. 

However, analysts warned HTC had a long way to go before regaining lost ground to rivals Samsung and Apple as well as low-cost Chinese rivals such as Lenovo and Huawei. 

In the 2013 third quarter, HTC swung to its first net loss of since listing in 2002, as it fell out of the world's top 10 sellers and has been struggling to increase its foothold in the highly competitive smartphone market.