HTC U11 Launched. Welcome to your new squeezy phone

HTC U11 Launched. Welcome to your new squeezy phone

Got yourself a HTC phone at the moment? If you have then there’s sadly not enough of you. Earlier in the year I took a look at the current HTC phones – namely the HTC U Play and HTC U Ultra. They’re properly gorgeous things. Polished, well designed but, unfortunately, not on shelves in many of the major stores.


Fortunes have changed quite significantly for HTC. Competitors have pushed​ ahead and previously little-known brands such as Huawei and Honor have now got their phones ranged by the major networks. Meanwhile HTC fans have had to resort to purchasing their handsets directly from the HTC website instead.

Here then, and please don’t ask me why it’s called this, is the HTC U11. As you’ll see from these shots, it’s another polished and glossy product. HTC call that finish “Liquid Surface”. Nice huh?

HTC U11 Launched. Welcome to your new squeezy phone

It is, without doubt, a flagship phone. The specs include a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 64-bit octa-core CPU running up to 2.45GHz. There’s a chunky 64GB storage (plus a microSD slot for more) and 4GB of memory, a 5.5″ Quad HD (2560 x 1440) Super LCD screen with 3D Corning Gorilla Glass and it’s IP67 water and dust proof.

Weighing in at 169 grams and measuring 153.9 x 75.9 x 7.9mm, it runs Android 7.1 with HTC Sense and comes with something called “HTC Edge Sense” to translate your gentle squeeze into actions on the phone. Easy Peasy HTC Squeezy.

Describing this feature, Ernest Doku, mobiles expert at uSwitch.com, tells us..

The handset’s most distinctive feature – a squeezable ‘scroll and select’ function – is a considered play for users who crave the full use of their screen.

The key here is to make sure the functionality of the Edge Sense is integral to the phone’s overall functionality, as well as can be leveraged by third-party apps, otherwise users could pretty quickly find it a tacked-on fad.

Here’s a look at it in action…

You edge at the lower half of the phone responds to pressure. You can adjust the level of pressure in the settings and there’s two gestures – a quick squeeze or a long squeeze. You can activate the camera, fire up voice activation or something else.

HTC Sense Companion, which pops up with suggestions based on the things you do, is also in there. The Amazon Alexa voice assistant, listening through four microphones, with wait for the “Alexa” keyword and will respond to your queries. You can though, if you wish, still use Google Assistant.

HTC U11 Launched. Welcome to your new squeezy phone

Camera-wise it’s a 12 megapixel HTC UltraPixel unit with “UltraSpeed Autofocus”, a BSI sensor and Optical Image Stabilization (OIS) plus an f/1.7 aperture and dual LED flash. There’s a stack of features including face detection, hyperlapse and slow-mo video. There’s also a professional mode with long exposure and RAW format support. Up front you get a 16 megapixel shooter with “Auto Selfie” and a live make-up feature. Both cameras have an “HDR Boost” option for making your pictures shine. This constantly calculates the correct light balance for your shots which means, guess what, no post-processing and wait-time after snapping a photo.

HTC U11 Launched. Welcome to your new squeezy phone

For your music, HTC have delivered Active Noise Cancellation in a system called “HTC USonic” and there’s a Hi-Fi sound. The earphones, according to the company, are the most advanced ever built for personal audio. As we’ve seen with HTC handsets before, you get to set up the audio balance with a step-through ultrasound guide before using them in anger. This ensures that they’re tuned for your ears.

Keep an eye on those supplied headphones, because there’s no 3.5mm audio port.

HTC U11 Launched. Welcome to your new squeezy phone

Thanks to that Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 CPU you also get up to 1Gbps 4G speeds – something we chatted to EE CEO, Marc Allera, about during Mobile World Congress as they tested it with another 835-packing phone – the Sony Xperia XZ.

HTC U11 Launched. Welcome to your new squeezy phone

There’s everything else you’d expect to find in a top-end phone too. GPS, a fingerprint sensor up-front, WiFi, Bluetooth 4.2, USB C charging, NFC and a 3000mAh non-removable battery. That battery will charge quickly thanks to Quick Charge 3.0 and it gives a 24.5 hour talk time.

HTC U11 Launched. Welcome to your new squeezy phone

Other features include an extreme power saving mode, always-on voice commands, motion launch, a pocket mode and you can put it face down to mute.

OK, now for the even better news. This will be available in “Amazing Silver, Sapphire Blue, Brilliant Black and Ice White” here in the UK from June. There’s also going to be a red one which will arrive later. Pricing is set at £649, and you can head to HTC.com/uk for more details or to pre-order one. It will also be available from launch at Carphone Warehouse, EE, O2, Amazon, Very.co.uk and Argos to name a few. Good to see EE and O2 picking it up, that’s for sure.

Head down for a picture gallery plus videos showing it in action. Full press release now available after the break..

HTC U11 Launched. Welcome to your new squeezy phone

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