HTC fires a U 11 salvo at rivals in high-end Android phone space
HTC U11 is one of the few smartphones in the market to offer Qualcomm’s latest Snapdragon 835 processor
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After the U Ultra, HTC is rolling out another flagship smartphone called U 11. It is priced at Rs51,990, and will be available in India by the end of June through both online and offline stores. Users can pre-order it on HTC e store from 17 June.
We take a look at some of its key highlights and how they compare with other Android flagships such as Samsung Galaxy S8 (Rs57,900) and LG G6 (Rs41,990).
The unique selling point of the U11 is the squeezable display feature which works on HTC’s Edge Sense technology and allows users to open the camera, click pictures, access Google Assistant or specific apps by applying pressure at different points on the side panel. On its part, the Samsung Galaxy S8’s highlight is the Infinity display which is basically a front panel without any vertical bezels. This has allowed Samsung to squeeze in a 5.8-inch screen without increasing the smartphone’s size. Then there is the LG G6, which is a treat for music lovers, thanks to the ES9218+Sabre Quad DAC (digital to analogue converter), which supports up to 32-bit high-resolution audio formats such as FLAC.
Battle of big screens
The HTC smartphone offers a 5.5-inch display with a resolution of 2,560x1,440p and has a layer of Gorilla Glass 5 for protection against drops and scratches. The Galaxy S8 also offers a resolution of 2,560x1,440 but has a slightly bigger 5.8-inch screen. There is a layer of Gorilla Glass 5 on it too. The LG G6 is closer to Galaxy S8 in terms of screen size. It has a 5.7-inch screen with 2,560x1,440p resolution, but uses an inferior Gorilla Glass 3.
The HTC U11 has a water-proof exterior, like the Galaxy S8. The only difference is that it has a IP67 rating, while the latter has a IP68 rating. The former provides protection up to a depth of 1 metre and the latter up to 1.5 metres. LG G6 also comes with IP68 certification.
At 148.9mm, the Galaxy S8 and LG G6 look smaller than HTC U11 which is 153.9 mm long. The S8 is the lightest of the three. It weighs just 155g, while the LG G6 tips the scales at 163g and HTC U11 at 169g.
Who has got the power
What gives the HTC U11 an upper hand over the rivals is the Snapdragon 835 octa-core chip inside it. It is the most powerful Qualcomm chipset till date and has also been used in the Sony Xperia XZ Premium and the US variant of the Galaxy S8. However, the Indian version of S8 runs on Samsung’s proprietary Exynos 8895 octa-core chipset. The LG G6 runs on Qualcomm’s slightly inferior Snapdragon 821 quad-core processor.
HTC has clubbed the processor with 6GB RAM and is offering 128GB of internal storage. The LG G6 has 4GB RAM and offers 64GB internal storage, while the Galaxy S8 has 4GB RAM and provides 64GB storage.
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Unique flavour of Android
All three phonemakers have their own custom user interfaces. HTC uses Sense UI, Galaxy S8 has TouchWiz and LG offers the LG UI. The only advantage of the HTC U11 is that it runs the latest Android 7.1 (Nougat), while its South Korean rivals run Android 7.0.