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The HTC U11 Plus is official: HTC's true flagship for 2017 has arrived!
After years of struggling, the Taiwanese electronics company is taking a drastically different approach with its mobile devices. Gone are the days of metal-clad smartphones, it’s all about that glass now. What started with the HTC U Ultra has continuously evolved over the last year or so (see: HTC U11), and the all-new HTC U11 Plus is living proof of this evolution. It follows this year’s flagship trend all the while maintaining HTC’s new signature look.
Without further ado, here is everything you need to know about the latest flagship from HTC, the U11 Plus.
Familiar but refined design
The U11 Plus is unmistakably HTC. Whether or not that’s good depends on your personal preference, of course. But there’s no arguing that the device looks very much minimalist, perhaps thanks to the fingerprint scanner’s new placement. With an 18:9 aspect ratio display, the company has moved the fingerprint reader to just below the phone’s rear-facing camera, and fortunately, there’s enough space between them that you shouldn’t worry about accidentally smudging the camera lens.
The U11 Plus is a clear continuation of the company’s new Liquid Surface design language, and similar to its just-announced midrange sibling, the U11 Plus boasts a mirror-like glistening finish. Of course, what differentiates the two devices is that the U11 Plus is made of glass, not acrylic, adding a more premium feel to it. Another notable difference is the IP rating. The U11 Life has an IP67 rating whereas the U11 Plus has an IP68 rating. This means the U11 Plus can be submerged under water for 30 minutes at depths of up to 1.5 meters.
The most striking design feature of the HTC U11 Plus is perhaps the Translucent color option, that lets you literally see through the Gorilla Glass back of the phone to take a look at antennas and other internal components. It’s a nice touch that nerds will love!
Not much has changed under the hood
In terms of specs, the U11 Plus is very similar to the U11 that was unveiled just a few months ago. The biggest difference is, of course, the screen: not only is it bigger at 6 inches, but it sports a brand-new 18:9 aspect ratio, a trend that we’ve been seeing from most manufacturers this year. However, everything else seems relatively unchanged.
The phone is powered by Qualcomm’s latest flagship Mobile Platform, Snapdragon 835. Just like the U11, the U11 Plus comes in two options: either 64 GB of internal storage with 4 GB of RAM or 128 GB of internal storage with 6 GB of RAM. There is a microSD slot if you ever run out.
Mobile photographers: the main camera also seems identical to the one found on the U11, which isn’t a bad thing considering that the U11 received what was then a record-breaking score of 90 from DxOMark. As HTC explains, the rear-facing camera is a 12-megapixel UltraPixel 3 sensor with f/1.7 aperture and 1.4 μm pixels. The front-facing camera is now an 8-megapixel sensor instead of the 16-megapixel one found on the U11. Megapixels don’t tell the whole story, so we will have to wait until we get our hands on the U11 Plus to see if there’s a difference. And audiophiles: HTC claims that the BoomSound speakers on the U11 Plus are 30 percent louder than those found on the U11.
A big improvement over the regular U11 is in the battery department. The U11 Plus is bigger and has a significantly larger battery – a 3,930 mAh one to be precise. Coupled with Quick Charge 3.0 and two power saving modes, the phone should last you a full day without a problem.
Don’t miss: HTC U11 Plus full specifications
Edge Sense. Upgraded
One of the most unique features of the original U11 was its squeezable frame, and being the latest flagship in the U-series, the U11 Plus also boasts a squeezable body. Just like its smaller sibling, the U11 Plus can summon AI assistants like Google Assistant and Alexa upon a simple squeeze.
HTC is also introducing “Edge Launcher,” which lets you access favorite apps, contacts, and quick settings by squeezing the phone’s frame. It’s kind of like Samsung’s Edge Panel but accessed with a squeeze. Edge Launcher sounds quite useful, especially for one-handed use.
There’s no 3.5 mm headphone jack, but have an Oreo
The U11 Plus, as expected, does not come with the traditional 3.5 mm headphone jack. However, what it does come with is Android Oreo, the latest version of Android! Although it’s not pure Android software, you should still be able to enjoy all the new features that were introduced with Android 8.0 such as snoozing notifications and picture-in-picture mode.
HTC U11 Plus pricing and availability
The U11 Plus will come in three colors: Translucent Black, Ceramic Black, and Amazing Silver. Unfortunately, we don’t have any information on the U11 Plus’ pricing and availability for now, but we will be sure to keep you updated.
More HTC U11 Plus coverage