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Video: First Look at the HTC U11!

htc u11

Now that the HTC U11 is no longer a badly-kept secret, you probably want to know if this is a phone you should consider. After all, it sure is pretty, but does it include the types of features you want in a 2017, $700 phone? We took it for a quick spin to find out.

What I can tell you after spending some time with the HTC U11 is that it feels very much like a slimmer, more compact U Ultra. That means the design is on-point. In fact, this is one of the sexier phones I think you’ll hold, as long as you don’t look at its front bezels. 

And yes, the rest of the top tier specs are there, like a super fast 12MP f/1.7 camera, Snapdragon 835, IP67 water resistance, Android 7.1.1 Nougat, and BoomSound. It also features Edge Sense, which allows you to squeeze the sides of the phone in order to get things done. That may sound gimmicky, but I actually think it could be pretty useful on the daily.

Overall, I think this is a well-made, well-designed phone from HTC. Unfortunately, it’s expensive and not available at most carriers (Sprint exclusive), so even if it does sound like a winner, I’m not sure how many of you are going to seriously consider it.

  • Theo Queiroz

    OMG! That shinny blue is so shinny that hurt my eyes. And I had my screen brightness set to 40%

  • LionStone

    Update: this phone is not expensive, even at $700, it’s still less than the Unlocked S8 at BestBuy ($725.!) which doesn’t include any insurance! But since there are promotions to be had, you can get it for $650. straight from HTC or even less with the code for $600.!!!!!!! Wow, yea not sure who would consider that kind of deal lol! Starting off this article with a broken link in an attempt to diss HTC comes off just very petty, so no change there from K.

  • Christopher W. Sanders

    Please DON’T squeeze the Charmin 😄

  • ASYOUTHIA✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

    Looks like the same stuff they’ve been putting out for the last few years. The squeeze gimmick looks usable. Too bad you can’t squeeze to minimize the bezels

    • droidbeat

      Nav buttons are below the screen, which frees up 5/16 inch of vertical space on the screen. You could effectively subtract 5/16 inch from the chin and see how much bezel that leaves. Not like the Pixel which has nothing on the chin and on-screen nav buttons. So, the HTC U11 has more usable screen space than a Pixel XL and more than a Galaxy S8.

      • ASYOUTHIA✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

        The U11 has a 5.5″ screen as the S8 has a 5.8″+ display, they only measure that in a rectangle and don’t include the edge of the screen

        Who has more usable area?

        • droidbeat

          The U11 for the reason I stated. Also, the wider aspect ratio displays videos larger. Not agreeing with you on how the S8 screen is measured either.

          • ASYOUTHIA✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            I like having 8+ hours SoT so I’ll skip the IPS screen and that wide body

        • deskjob

          I think the S8’s screen size is a bit misleading. That 5.8″ includes the curved portion, which besides looking cool really has no functional value. The actual usable screen size is closer to 5.5″ to 5.6″. And then you have to deal with the non-standard aspect ratio, which leads to either black bars or pixelated video with portions cut off.

          • ASYOUTHIA✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            Try again, it doesn’t include the edges

          • deskjob

            Will have to measure it next time I head to Best Buy. Assuming that the edges are not included, everything else I said still stands. Simple math – the S8 has less actual screen area:


          • ASYOUTHIA✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            Problem solved: buy an S8+

            Where’s the math equation for that?

          • deskjob

            The bigger and even more over-priced S8+ has exactly the same problems as the S8. You obviously didn’t bother to read the linked article. Math doesn’t change.

  • markwebb

    $599 promo price and unlocked is worth it.

    • droidbeat

      Pixel camera was not overhyped. I have a Pixel XL and an HTC 10. The Pixel camera is unbelievable. To best it is quite an accomplishment. I will see, since I have ordered the U11.

      • markwebb

        I didn’t say Pixel camera was overhyped, just the phone in general. As far as I’m concerned the HTC 11 sounds like it should have been what the Pixel should be.

  • Boomdizzle

    Holy fingerprint magnet Batman

    • droidbeat

      microfiber cloth in da-box. 🙂

  • John

    Well we will know how the Pixel 2 will look like at least.

    • droidbeat

      I think they were well down the development path of the Pixel 2 before the Pixel was launched.

  • Me

    The only thing I don’t like about this phone is the capacitive buttons.

    • droidbeat

      I actually like them being off-screen. Frees up screen space. They have tended to work well on previous HTCs, but I wish they’d move them up a bit to center them on the chin.

      • I’am freelancing through the internet, carrying out normal gigs that only demands from you desktop or laptop computer and internet access and so I couldn’t be more happy… Half a year have passed by since i started off this and also i earned until now in whole $36,000… Basically i benefit about 80 bucks every hour and work for three to 4 h each day.And stunning point about this job is that you are able to choose when to work on your own and for how long and you receive income in the end of each and every week.>>>> http://mca-biz.com/mfyWd

  • :Former HTC fanboy here:

    Sorry, but this is not enough to bring me back.

    • ASYOUTHIA✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

      Their last good phone (for the time) was the OG EVO 4G

    • droidbeat

      Never left. It’s HTC in the spring, and Pixel in the fall.

  • trevorsalienarms

    Oh look, it’s the Pixel 2.

  • chris_johns

    pretty phone and the red is fire…but no thanks

  • AvalancheRyder

    Sounds like the squeeze is basically the programmable button everyone wanted the Bixby button to be on the S8.

  • Guest

    1.No Verizon
    2. No Headphone jack
    3. Huge bezels

    No thanks

  • Good_Ole_Pinocchio

    I dunno if we can call $650 expensive for 4/64/835/IP67 … I think it’s fair pricing for what it offers….UNLIKE the 750 Ultra which is madness

    • Mike

      Still cheaper than the Pixel XL and has a better processor and water proofing. I think it’s about right pricing as well.

      • Good_Ole_Pinocchio

        It definitely is. I think it can hang at that price point with the G6. Problem as usual for HTC will be no real in store availability….

        • Mike

          Yea, I don’t really get that but I’m sure it majorly cuts down on HTC’s cost not having to provide dummy units for stores. Still though, not letting people hold it before purchasing it is going to make it a tough sell.

        • droidbeat

          Stores are toast.

          • Good_Ole_Pinocchio

            Not in this country.

      • droidbeat

        I’d say it’s worth more than the $729 S8. Relative to that, it’s a bargain.

    • Me

      Not to mention its audio prowess. That included dac is pretty nice

    • droidbeat

      I think he was referring to the near-$700 price on Sprint. He said the $649 price was pretty good later.

  • Good_Ole_Pinocchio

    How the Silver and Solar Red changes color is absolute fire!🔥🔥… If only they could do some kind of lamination on those backs so it isn’t a fingerprint magnet sheesh.

  • Why HTC why… With everyone else have slim bezels, why are yours like those from 2012?

    • Good_Ole_Pinocchio

      Let’s be realistic this phone was already built way before the slim bezel hype.

      • And then again, I don’t understand the bezel hate. Last time I knew, iPhones were still selling like hotcakes and they offer some nice, thicc bezels.

        • Good_Ole_Pinocchio

          To be fair the iPhone plans on chopping the bezels off this year… But still, Bezels don’t bother me at all. I think it’s fine on the Pixel for example, even after own the S8 now.

        • It’s just hard to go from a phone with slim bezels to one without.

        • sc0rch3d

          To be fair, iPhone has unlocked the secret behind designing a phone/software/experience such that users don’t pay attention to specs…much like Android users do.

        • ASYOUTHIA✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

          The iSheep have to deal with it, they don’t know any better.

          Android users have choices

          • LionStone

            Not everyone goes for that skinny form factor, curved edges catching glare and being more susceptible to damage since they are harder to protect…

  • My M7 was a great phone and that was the last HTC I had before switching to Nexus devices. Since I can’t stand my current S7 Edge this looks great. Never had any glitches or lag with HTC and I’m never buying Samsung again.

    • Drew

      M8 was good as well.

      • The HTC 10 was pretty solid. But it was just an overall good phone, nothing that sets it apart.

  • Jérôme Besnard

    I’m not exited about this phone whatsoever. I’m not been interested in any HTC phone actually since the One M7 4 years ago.

  • CapnShiner

    Can anyone name a Sprint exclusive phone that was a market success?

    What was HTC thinking? How much cash do you think Sprint offered to make it exclusive? Or do you think all the other carriers just passed on it?

    • Taios

      They probably passed on it.. Carriers seem to only give one other manufacturer outside Samsung a shot. Previously it was htc, now it’s LG.
      Soon LG will probably be out as well

    • stang68

      HTC Evo was a successful Sprint exclusive.

      I win!

    • Good_Ole_Pinocchio

      I mean the HTC Evo was the most dominant Amdroid phone of it’s time. One of the most important Amdroid phones period…..but that was back when Sprint wasn’t a complete sht carrier that nobody cares about….like they are today.

  • droidbeat

    Best camera, best audio, gorgeous finish. Worth consideration.

  • calvin35

    Will they squeeze functionality worth with a case?

    • Mike

      That’s actually a really good question, I don’t most will keep it naked. I’m guessing it will work with a TPU case but not any hard shell cases.

      • droidbeat

        I’m leaning toward rocking it buck naked. The phone, too.

    • T4rd

      It’s pressure sensitive, not capacitive. So it should work with softer/thinner cases that allow you to squeeze the phone through the case. I’m interested to see how well it works with them as well though.

  • disastrousrainbow

    The phone’s pretty much DOA in the U.S. Glad the unlocked model supports all carriers, but I’m not sure what kind of success HTC is honestly expecting there seeing as most aren’t going to drop nearly $700 just like that, and going with the smallest carrier out of the big four?


    • Jeremy Turnley

      I can only think that they have so little faith in the sales of their phones that they would rather take the guaranteed payout from Sprint than waste money shipping phones to the other carriers that won’t sell. The HTC 10 was dropped from T-Mo’s inventory 3 months after it launched, obviously there is something not working for HTC in the marketing department, because it was in no way a bad phone.

      • LionStone

        Yep, plus Verizon which had it’s own variant, stopped putting it on display and basically had zero stock.

    • droidbeat

      With half-way decent marketing, HTC’s biggest problem would be meeting demand. This phone is a rocking great bargain. Best at a lot of things. And a good price.