Review: HTC U12+
The HTC U12+ is an incredibly advanced smartphone that somehow bungles a couple of core features, thereby sidelining the whole thing. It's maddening.
In the plus column, we have the sultry design, the pleasing build, the gorgeous screen, and the waterproof chassis. Radio performance was good enough, and voice calls got the job done. Music sounds great whether you're listening via HTC's USonic headphones or the U12+'s BoomSound speakers. A fast processor with lots of RAM, plenty of storage, and capable cameras really help the U12+ impress.
The negatives, however, are really negative. Battery life is the most worrisome issue. The inconsistency I saw over more than a week of testing left me not trusting the phone. Then there are the buttons. I never got the hang of them. The electronic side keys just aren't as quick or as responsive as real buttons would be and the experience slows you down. The burdensome software doesn't help. While I appreciate having options, HTC's everything-and-the-kitchen-sink approach left me feeling overwhelmed at times.
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HTC sells the U12+ online unlocked for $800. That's a lot for a phone with questionable battery life and weird buttons. Though I really like aspects of this phone, I think your money may be better spent right now on alternatives like the LG G7, V35, or Galaxy S9+.
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HTC's 2018 flagship is the U12+, a phone that aims directly at competing devices such as the Samsung Galaxy S9+, LG G7, and iPhone X. The U12+ sees HTC adopting the 2:1 screen aspect ratio, dialing back the bezels, and carrying over the luscious liquid design from last year's phone.
Aug 17, 2018
HTC today made its flagship phone available in a third color option. Consumers interested in a red phone can now pick that instead of black or blue.
Aug 1, 2018
HTC is pushing a system update to the U12 that includes a number of adjustments for the phone. To start, the update adds two new features: auto zoom when recording video, and 4K video capture at 30fps with no time limit.
May 23, 2018
HTC today announced the U12+, its flagship handset for the year. The phone carries over the "liquid design" from last year's U11, but updates the color selection for the metal-and-glass chassis.