I do love stock Android, but getting hold of those Google Pixels or even the aging Nexuses isn’t the easiest of things these sides of the world. But with Android One, I was finally able to get the closest to what it feels to own a Pixel or Nexus phone.
One little problem, though, is that things haven’t been great since the launch of the Android One program a few years ago. Not so many OEMs have embraced the program and thus there aren’t so many, albeit good, devices being released. In fact, at some point, we even thought that the program was dead, but thanks to the Xiaomi Mi A1, we now have some real hope in Android One.
After the launch of the Nougat-powered Xiaomi Mi A1, Android One has also welcomed another member in the shape of Lenovo’s Moto X4, but this variant is limited to the U.S. market. While other markets can still purchase the Moto X4, it will be based on Motorola’s software and not Android One like the Mi A1 or the U.S. version of the X4.
Now, in a bid to add more decent phones to the program, Google has partnered with HTC for a new Android One smartphone dubbed HTC U11 Life. As you may have noticed, this phone falls under the latest HTC U lineup and according to the latest reports, it will be unveiled alongside another rumored phone dubbed HTC U11 Plus, the first from the company with an 18:9 aspect ratio and no bezels.
Apparently, the HTC U11 Life will be unveiled on November 2, which is actually later this week and as part of Android One program, the phone will ship with a pure version of the OS, thus allowing for fast and timely software updates, just like the Pixels and Nexuses. This means that the famous Sense UI skin will not appear on top of the stock Android OS and only Google’s apps will come preinstalled.
HTC U11 Life specs
According to WinFuture, the upcoming HTC U11 Life will feature a 5.2-inch display screen with a 1080p resolution and protected by a yet to be determined Gorilla Glass version. Under the hood, the phone will pack a Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 SoC clocked at 2.2GHz and mated with 3GB/4GB RAM and 32GB/64GB of internal storage, which can be expanded using a microSD card. When compared to the Mi A1, this device is more powerful.
You’ll love what HTC is doing with the cameras of the HTC U series and the U11 Life is a beneficiary. The phone will come with a 16MP lens on the back and front with f/2.0 aperture and support for HDR, 4K video recording and ability to record in RAW format. In terms of software, the U11 Life has Android 8.0 Oreo out of the box and for power, you get a 2600mAh battery unit that is charged via a USB-C port, which also doubles as the audio port for the HTC USonic headphones the phone ships with.
Other features of the HTC U11 Life Android One phone include Bluetooth 5.0, NFC and an IP67 dust and water resistant body, perhaps one of the most important additions to the phone’s build. The phone will be available in at least three color variants of Sapphire Blue, Ice White and Brilliant Black.
In Europe, the HTC U11 Life will be priced at €369 for the base model, which translates to about Ksh Ksh 44,500. We don’t know if and when the phone will come to Kenya, but you can be sure we’ll let you know when it does.