One of 2017’s most unique-looking, eye-catching flagship Android phones thus far isn’t really in contention for a bestseller title due to poor distribution and HTC’s flagging brand recognition, which definitely makes us sad.

But it’s even more heartbreaking to see the theoretically premium built HTC U11 fail the obligatory bend test every top-shelf device from the Samsung Galaxy S8 to the LG G6 and last year’s HTC 10 managed to pass with flying colors.

In fact, the Taiwanese OEM’s 2016 crown jewel was the overall top pick of popular YouTube channel JerryRigEverything for the most durable smartphone of its time. The redesigned HTC U Ultra, meanwhile, painfully cracked under moderate pressure, but the U11 completely snapped and stopped working after a simple experiment evaluating its relative back pocket endurance.

You may want to be extra-careful not to sit on this shiny glass rear-sporting, metal-framed beaut, or if you don’t plan on using its squeezable edges, just buy a rigid, tough protective case and leave all concerns behind.

Unfortunately, the structural flaws of a phone combining very pretty 3D curved glass and a functionality-enhancing flexible frame could also pose problems in routine drop scenarios. Bottom line, make sure you do everything possible to keep the HTC U11 out of harm’s way or be prepared for massive damage. Except for scratches and even short-term exposure to fire.

 

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