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Is HTC the new copycat of design or just using best of features from Samsung and LG?

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When the HTC announced the HTC One M7, its design and materials changed the mobile market from then on. Even Apple took some design notes from HTC’s flagship of the time.

Last year, HTC made the Google Pixel and yes it resembled an iPhone very much so, even down to its thick bezels. HTC has just announced the HTC U Ultra and HTC U Play and it looks a lot like the Samsung Galaxy S7 from the back and takes the second screen element of the LG V20. While it does look very nice, the company has been down when it comes to originality. The nice thing about the newly announced phones is that they take two design choices that I appreciate and enjoy.

For one, having a second screen on the LG V20 that I have been using for the past 4 months has been extremely useful and one of the main reasons that I love the phone. The second screen is so handy especially when it comes to toggling settings such as Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and sound profiles as well as seeing what types of notifications you have received. All of this has been possible without having to turn on the main screen and has made it a unique experience. At first I thought to myself, “Wow! That’s a complete copy off the V20.” But then i thought, “You know, it’s one feature that I do wish other phones would have because it’s actually useful.”

Second, I love Samsung’s Galaxy S7 design that evolved from the Galaxy S6. So the backing of the HTC U series has good looks right away to me. It screams a premium look and that’s not a bad thing. HTC needs the attention and to stay alive because they weren’t doing so hot the past couple of years.

While these new U series devices may get a bad reputation for stealing designs, they have decent specs to back them up if the price is right (see specs below). Will people flock back to HTC after their success with the Google Pixel hardware?

HTC U Ultra specs:

  • $750
  • 5.7″ screen, 2560×1440
  • 4GB RAM
  • 64 or 128GB storage
  • Snapdragon 821
  • Back camera: 12MP UltraPixel 2, 1.55-micron pixel, f/.1.8, OIS
    PDAF, Laser AF, dual-tone flash
    4K video with 3D audio
    Slow motion 720p at 120fps
    hi-res audio
  • Front camera: 16MP, BSI
    UltraPixel mode, 1080p video

HTC U Play specs:

  • $400-$500
  • International device
  • 5.2″ screen, 1920×1080
  • 3-4GB RAM
  • 32 or 64GB storage
  • Mid-range MediaTek processor
  • Back camera: 16MP BSI f/2.0, OIS, PDAF
    Dual-tone flash, 1080p video at 30fps
  • Front camera: 16MP BSI f/2.0
    UltraPixel mode, 1080p video
Matthew Whitaker
Founder and owner of Swipe to Unlock News. Matthew's current daily driver is the frost colored 64GB Nexus 6p.