HTC U12 Features, Release Date Leaked: Dual Camera, Snapdragon 845

HTC U12 Launch Features
Image Source: / YouTube video (screenshot)

Most Android vendors including Samsung showcased their newest flagships at the Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona. HTC is yet to refresh its flagship U line. The Taiwanese company is struggling to turn its smartphone business profitable. That’s why it has decided to launch only a small number of mid-range and premium smartphones this year, and HTC U12 will be one of them. Now a reliable tipster has shared the HTC U12 aka HTC Imagine’s features, specifications, release date, and other details on Twitter.

Noted HTC leaker @LlabTooFeR said in a tweet that the HTC U12 would launch “somewhere in April.” The company traditionally announces its new flagship U phones in May. Another Twitter tipster Ricciolo said last month that the HTC U12 would be unveiled “this spring in NYC.” Both the tipsters have a decent track record, so we can expect the HTC U12 to launch in April or May this year.

According to @LlabTooFeR, HTC will bring back the dual camera setup with the U12. HTC had launched a dual camera smartphone long before it became a thing. The U12’s rear camera setup would consist of a 12-megapixel and a 16-megapixel lens. The tipster did not explain how it would work, but the difference in megapixel count should help you take pictures in portrait or zoom modes without losing detail. It features an 8-megapixel camera on the front for selfies.

HTC U12 would run the company’s custom Edge Sense UI 2.0 on top of Android Oreo out of the box. It would also borrow the Edge Sense feature from the U11, which allows users to launch apps by squeezing the sides of the phone. The handset will be powered by Qualcomm’s latest Snapdragon 845 chipset, which powers Samsung’s Galaxy S9 and Sony’s Xperia XZ2 flagship. The HTC U12 is said to offer 6GB RAM and up to 256GB of internal storage.

According to @LlabTooFeR, HTC’s upcoming flagship would sport a 5.99-inch OLED display with Quad HD+ resolution of 2880 x 1440 pixels. The leak was further confirmed by VentureBeat contributor Evan Blass, who has a notoriously good track record of leaking smartphone features ahead of their launch. Powering the U12 will be a 3420mAh battery. HTC will reportedly launch the phone in single- and dual-SIM variants.

HTC U12 is also said to come with an IP68 rating for dust- and water-resistance. It would also offer the Face Unlock technology to let users quickly unlock the device. @LlabTooFeR added that the device would support Google’s Project Treble, which means faster software updates. There will be a seamless A/B partition. Here’s how it works. If your device is running Android on partition A, the new updates will be installed in partition B in the background. Whenever you reboot the phone after the updates have been installed, it will boot from partition B.

@LlabTooFeR did not mention whether the device would launch with or without the 3.5mm headphone jack. HTC removed the audio jack from last year’s HTC U11 Plus. GizmoChina recently reported that the U12 would also get rid of the headphone jack.

A few weeks ago, HTC secretly previewed the U12 at a 5G event hosted by Chunghwa Telecom in Taiwan. The handset showcased at the event had a huge bezel-less display with an 18:9 aspect ratio. Its side curves were more pronounced than they are on the HTC U11 Plus. Powered by the Snapdragon 845 SoC and Qualcomm’s X20 LTE modem, it was able to hit a peak download speed of 810Mbps, which is pretty close to Gigabit speed.

HTC was once one of the world’s largest smartphone vendors. But the company has lost much of the market share to Samsung and Chinese Android vendors in recent years. The company has been losing money for almost three years now. In 2017, it recorded the lowest revenues in the last 13 years. HTC is hoping that the launch of U12 and a few mid-range devices would help it revive its fortunes. The company recently laid off employees in the US.

HTC has already sold much of its smartphone business to Google for $1.1 billion. As the Taiwanese company prepares to launch the HTC U12 flagship, its president of smartphone and connected devices division Chialin Chang has resigned. Chang was one of the last remaining executives not to have left the company. HTC said in a statement that Chang resigned due to his “personal career plan,” while local media reports suggest Chang left the company to launch his own AI startup.