Robert Downey Jr. Signed $12 Million HTC Smartphone Deal [Rumor]

Robert Downey Jr. may have been signed to a $12 million deal to promote HTC smartphones, according to a rumor being floated today in The Los Angeles Times and yesterday in Bloomberg.

Hmm. According to the LAT, HTC hasn’t confirmed the rumor.

Bloomberg reporter Tim Culpan said that he had two sources who told him that Robert Downey Jr. would be getting the hefty payday for a two-year contract to help promote the underdog Taiwanese smartphone brand.

HTC has suffered an enormous collapse in popularity, allowing it to become eclipsed by Samsung, which has spent ten times as much on marketing as HTC does.

According to Bloomberg’s data, HTC sales recently posted its worst quarter ever, and market share is down 76 percent from its peak.

In a recent highly publicized deal with Jay-Z, Samsung is offering one million free downloads of his 12th studio album, Magna Carta Holy Grail, starting at 12:01 AM EST on July 4. I already posted a full report on that offer — and how you can get one of the free downloads yourself — so click right here if you want more details.

Samsung reportedly paid $5 apiece for the downloads, meaning that Jay-Z will receive a cool $5 million for the deal.

So the $12 million for Robert Downey Jr. doesn’t sound completely crazy right off the bat. However, HTC wasn’t giving out much detail. In the LAT statement, they made the rather vague comment that, “[W]e’ve said over the past several months…HTC is working to change its approach in how and where it markets its products to compete in a more effective manner.”

If the rumors are true and Robert Downey Jr. is the face of that changed marketing, the Sherlock Holmes star has had a profitable week indeed.

As The Inquisitr previously reported, the actor has just inked a deal with Marvel to return as Iron Man for the Avengers 2 and 3 sequels.

With or without HTC, the future looks bright for Robert Downey Jr.

[Robert Downey Jr. photo by s_bukley /]