HTC made a quick start to 2017 and announced the new flagship phones before its competitors. New U series are aimed for people who like to customize their phones. In fact, it was HTC’s purpose for the last few years.
Most striking phone in the family is the U Ultra which has a 5.7-inch screen with Quad HD resolution. With Sense Companion, the company, which tries to capture the trend of artificial intelligence placement on smartphones, walks the way of LG by putting a second screen on the Ultra. The Taiwanese manufacturer, who had previously said goodbye to the headphone jack with the Bolt, maintains the same attitude with the Ultra. HTC’s new flagship also does not have a headphone jack.
The first point about U Ultra is the striking and brilliant design. Having a new concept of design called “Liquid Surface”, HTC has made sure that the glass surface of the smart phone really looks like a liquid. It is not easy to imagine how it would feel when holding a handset with an outer surface that looks very smooth. Another noteworthy addition is the second 2-inch screen. The second screen, which extends to the right of the front camera in a thin strip, has a resolution of 160 x 1040 pixels. Just like on the LG V10 and V20, the U Ultra will also have shortcuts for notifications, reminders and frequent talkers on the second screen. Thanks to the second screen, music played on the phone can also be controlled.
The smart phone’s Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 processor is accompanied by 4 GB of RAM. The internal storage options vary between 64 and 128 GB. Thanks to microSD card support it is possible to get 2 TB extra storage space. U Ultra carries a 12 Megapixel UltraPixel camera on the HTC 10. However, thanks to the presence of the auto-focus system with phase detection, the camera is a little more advanced than the one we saw on the HTC 10. The f / 1.8 aperture camera features laser auto focus, large pixels and optical view stabilization. U Ultra has a 16 megapixel camera in front of it. However, on the front camera, you have an option to select the UltraPixel mode, which decreases the resolution to 4MP, but makes the pixels large, which would be handy in dark places. The HTC U Ultra, which houses a 3000 mAh battery, will be out of the box with the Android 7.0 Nougat operating system.
HTC aims to be one of the leading spots in the software’s new flagship. The company, which adds features that take the artificial intelligence to the phone for this purpose, aims to guess what its users will do and give them useful suggestions in this direction. This system, which is called Sense Companion, can learn the habits and offer recommendations if the user allows it. For example, the U Ultra may recommend charging the battery if it expects the user to stay out longer than the estimated battery life. Or it can advise you to wear tightly while the weather is cold. It is eventually an improved version of the geographic and contextual suggestions that was present on the previous versions of the Sense interface.
Together with the Ultra, HTC offers the USonic headphones. The USonic, a renamed version of the in-ear headphones that comes with the HTC Bolt and 10 Evo, offers a higher sound quality with a USB-C connection. The HTC U Ultra will take its place on the shelf with blue, black, white and pink colors. The 64 GB version of the smartphone can be pre-ordered with a price tag of $ 749. The phone, which will initially be sold in Taiwan by the end of January, will travel to the world market in March. The price of the smartphone with 128 GB internal storage and the version with sapphire crystal screen is still unknown.
There is also a second model called as U Play, with which, HTC is adding a more modest option to the Ultra. Just like in the previous generations, Play stands near the flagship in terms of design. But when you look at the components, the point between the two smartphones is getting a bit more open. HTC’s “Liquid Surface” architecture can also be seen on the U Play. As a matter of fact, Play has the same brilliant look as his big brother.
Unlike the U Ultra, Play comes with MediaTek Helio P10. This processor is accompanied by 3 GB of RAM. Internal storage options are 32 and 64 GB. The 5.2-inch screen of the smartphone has a resolution of 1080 pixels. Behind the HTC U Play is a 16 megapixel regular camera. This camera features smaller pixels compared to the Ultra, and includes features such as automatic HDR and optical image stabilization. In front of the phone, you will find a 16 megapixel camera just like the HTC U Ultra. This camera’s UltraPixel mode makes it possible to capture clearer self-squares in low-light environments.
Moreover, HTC U Play is not at the same point as the U Ultra in terms of software. For some reason, U Play comes with Android Marshmallow. Even though HTC’s smart features is already available on the regular model as well, you won’t find the newest features of Android on this one, at least, until it gets the Android Nougat. HTC is also keeping the headphone out of the way in Play. The headset connection to the smartphone is via USB-C input. The USonic in-ear headphones that come with the phone give you a more advanced sound experience.
The Taiwanese manufacturer offers the same color choices for the U Play. The smart phone will be available in blue, pink, black and white. The U of February is marked as the middle of the month for the Play’s release. As for the smart phone’s sales price, no information has been provided for now.