Hands-on: HTC U11 Life review

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Conclusion There used to be a "mini" trend in smartphones a while ago - manufacturers would launch a "Mini" or "Light" version of a recently-released flagship phone.

As for the HTC U11 Plus - it is sort of the Pixel 2 XL (version 0.5), but also pretty much not. It will only come to the United Kingdom and the rest of Europe, not the USA, starting this November.

So HTC's new U11 Life phone isn't unique for removing the headphone jack - but it is unique for the solution it presents instead. Both new U11 models are squeezable. Noise-canceling headphones are usually pricey, and not free with the purchase of a $349 smartphone (they cost $39.99 if you choose to buy them separately).

The HTC U11 Life supports LTE bands B1/B2/B3/B4/B5/B7/B12/B17/B13/B28/B20/B66.

A release date for Australia is now unclear, but we've asked HTC and hope to hear more soon.

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Pre-orders kick off on 20th November, with a SIM-free price tag of £699. We'll update once we know more. But as is noted in this report, the fingerprint reader very much resembles that of one Google would use, as do the dimensions of the U11+'s display and overall spec sheet. It is Water and dust resistant with the IP67 rating.

It has been rumored for several weeks now that HTC was coming out with a new smartphone that has a full front display, and it turns out the chatter was true.

Among other specifications, you will get 64GB or 128GB of internal storage, NFC, 4G LTE connectivity, and microSD card slot. The Plus features even slimmer bezels, and it adopts the 18:9 aspect ratio we've seen in the majority of flagships handsets this year.

"Let's start off with the display as it's the first thing most people will look at and this device has a 5.2" 1080p Super LCD panel.

There's optical image stabilization as well as electronic image stabilization (EIS), and there's also HDR Boost and a Pro mode that should allow you to take some great photos with the rear camera. When compared side-by-side with a similarly priced phone like the $400 Moto X4, as expected, both phones performed admirably in the daytime. You can record in 4K though with hi-res audio too. The U11+ will likely promise the same battery life with a 6-inch display. The battery is rated at 3,930mAh and supports Qualcomm's Quick Charge 3.0. And perhaps best of all, it comes with Android Oreo preinstalled, a result of HTC selling its device business to Google earlier this year. Also, since the life is not a Google phone, you can actually customize what the squeeze does, and even separate long squeezes and short squeezes as different gestures.