didn't say I thought it was a good idea, just wouldn't be surprised. why go for the niche market? wouldn't be the first time they've done it, how many colors is the xd coming in now? a custom shop, sight options, barrel lengths, frame sizes, .45gap, the xdm in general, they are all aimed at a niche markets, hell the xdm is already up to 3 variants not counting slide finish and frame color. most of the engineering and development is already done making it fairly low cost. not to mention it appeals to a demographic that usually has money to buy. manual safeties are offered on competing designs. even glock has been known to make offerings to niche markets like the single stack g36, the SF line, discontinued od green models, gen4 dual spring system is a guide rod bandwagon jump. production isn't an issue as SA doesn't manufacture, HS may be already offering it to other markets.Yes, I would be suprised at another thumb safety model. The thumb safety was added to one model of XD45 4". Mostly for a contract bid requirement. Never put on any other model or caliber. Not a popular option. The grip safety is fully ambidexterous and all that is really needed - and more than some other pistols offer.
Maybe, if another big contract came open with that as a requirement. As far as needing more market share, first they have to have production start to exceed their current sales and any other new model plans. Haven't seen where XD's are sitting unsold or have needed major price drops to boost sales. So why go for a nitch market gimmick?