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Rediff.com  » Getahead » HTC U Ultra: Should you spend Rs 60k?

HTC U Ultra: Should you spend Rs 60k?

April 03, 2017 10:35 IST

'It is a great phone,' says Kakoli Chakraborty, 'but...'

HTC U Ultra

HTC phones have been overshadowed over the years by other smartphones providing similar specifications at a lower price.

Instead of taking the budget phone route, HTC is aiming big with the U Ultra.

Priced at Rs 59,990, the U Ultra plans to secure a spot in the premium segment.

The phone is undoubtedly good looking and reminds you of the Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge.

The front features a glass panel with a single capacitive button at the bottom that doubles up as a fingerprint sensor.

The glossy back, though attractive, is a magnet for fingerprint smudges.

The phone comes with a Gorilla Glass 5 coating, but it is advisable to get an additional tempered glass covering as it is susceptible to scratches.

HTC U Ultra

The 5.7-inch WQHD display with 2,560 x 1,440 resolution makes it ideal for catching up on shows and movies on Netflix or Amazon Prime.

I used it to watch entire seasons of Love and Supernatural, and was pleased with the experience.

Under the hood, it houses a Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 processor with 4GB of RAM.

Though not the best processor available, it performs seamlessly even while running RAM-heavy games and apps.

I tested Asphalt 8 and Order and Chaos Online, and didn't face any hitches.

The U Ultra also features a secondary display, much like the Edge, that can be quite nifty for some users. However, I didn't find much use for it.

The phone features a 12 megapixel (MP) primary and a 16 MP secondary camera, clearly indicating that HTC is catering to the selfie generation.

But unfortunately, low-light conditions still haven't been taken into consideration.

The primary camera shoots great pictures in good lighting, but falters in low lighting.

Even though the price range is similar to that of the iPhone 7 and the Google Pixel, the low-light photos don't measure up.

HTC U Ultra

The secondary camera, as usual, provides for excellent selfies.

It does provide seamless performance, but the battery backup, of 3,000 mAh, doesn't quite hold its own.

Considering its price tag, the U Ultra should have been able to deliver better.

However, the aspect that stands out is the sound quality.

HTC U Ultra

The U Ultra comes with the trademark HTC BoomSound soundstage. The speakers alone are good enough to play music or videos.

Perhaps because it's competing with the iPhone 7, the U Ultra doesn't come with a headphone jack.

It has a USB Type-C port to be used for both charging and listening to music. Luckily, the phone comes with USB Type-C earphones.

I played Paint it Black, Enya's May it Be and Iron Maiden's The Rime of the Ancient Mariner to test the sound quality and wasn't disappointed at all.

The U Ultra has a great set of specifications and is a premium phone in the truest sense.

But with other smartphones providing more or less the same features for a lesser price, it would be an arduous task for it to become a bestseller in the segment.

Kakoli Chakraborty
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