HTC seem to have been having problems with handset launches even since last year in the One X/S days, where they were already facing component shortages and were not able to meet launch demand for their new devices. The nice design and materials used also mean the cost of producing each handset is higher and gives HTC less scope to discount than, say, Samsung does.
Samsung have quite a few other advantages to drive down costs, for example being a major component manufacturer for smartphone parts as well (DRAM, Flash and displays), whereas HTC has to buy all their components, without the advantage of a history of being able to drive large volumes. This is now borne out by the S4 being cheaper than the One, at least based on a cursory online search. Yes, and plastic feels cheaper because it is
Also, their marketing was not as aggressive or salient as Samsung's - Samsung have such a big presence in the retail shops. I've seen this in the UK, and also in SE Asia where there seem to be so many more handphone dealers selling Samsung than those selling HTC.
Daily Driver: LG/Google Nexus 5
Backup: Nokia Lumia 620, HTC Desire, Nokia 5800XM, Nokia 3350
R.I.P./Sold: Motorola V3, Samsung D600, SE K800i, SE W800i, Nokia 6300, Apple iPhone, HTC One S C2, Nokia Lumia 710, Samsung I-9300 Galaxy S III