Most high-end smartphones these days are able to easily pass painful durability tests like the ones routinely performed by JerryRigEverything YouTuber Zack Nelson, but as if HTC doesn’t have enough on its plate already, the company’s main 2017 flagship somehow managed to evoke iPhone “Bendgate” memories.

After joining the likes of the BlackBerry KEYone and Honor 6X on the DIY channel’s high-profile “shelf of shame”, it appears the HTC U11 has spawned a sequel that’s not quite as feeble.

Unfortunately, the HTC U12+ is not exactly a return to form either, only resisting destructive bends in part and presenting several worrisome build quality weaknesses. Believe it or not, the phone’s supposedly “premium” glass back can actually be removed with relative ease after applying a bit of pressure, which is by no means a good thing.

Granted, the everyday user is unlikely to intentionally try to snap the device in two, but presumably, this vulnerability could pose a risk in the long haul, possibly impacting the advertised IP68 water resistance rating.

On the bright side, at least there’s some type of a buffer layer placed between the glass screen and metal frame now, and the latter is as well-built as they come. The former is also protected against scratches largely on par with other handsets in the U12+ price range, but the earpiece and side-mounted buttons seem susceptible to long-term damage as well. All in all, you can probably do better at $799 and up.

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