The HTC U11 Life does cut out some of the fancy features of the HTC U11, but the inclusion of Android One marks it out as a good-value long-term phone investment.
- Android One means upgrades should come fast
- Sense UI is more flexible than on the Pixel
- Water resistant
- Long-lasting battery
- No headphone jack
- Ordinary camera
- Plastic body feels cheap
- Weird USB C socket placement
The HTC U11 Life cuts out some of the nicer features on the HTC U11, but the price cut and the inclusion of Android One means it's a great mid-range option.
HTC's biggest headline in 2017 was arguably when it announced that it was selling off a decent proportion of its IP as well as the employment contracts of many of its mobile development team directly to Google. That followed months of speculation that the Taiwanese smartphone maker was going to exit the smartphone business, although that didn't eventuate. 2017 saw the release of the HTC U11, a phone that more or less served as the prototype for the Google Pixel 2.
The HTC U11 Life is the somewhat cut-down version of the HTC U11, but it was released only after the Pixel 2 had been formally announced. While it's been available overseas for some time, it's only recently become available in Australia as a Vodafone exclusive.
As such, it's a cheaper HTC U11, but the inclusion of Android One means that it's also inherited just a little Pixel 2 DNA as well.
- Cheaper version of the HTC U11 design
- Includes water resistance
- No headphone socket
- Mid-range camera performance
- Beauty mode can take face smoothing too far
- Snapdragon 660 provides exactly the performance you'd expect
- Android One gives the HTC U11 Life more longevity than most mid-range handsets
- More open Edge Sense than on Google's own Pixel phones
- Superb battery life
- Charging port is in a weird spot
- Definitely worth comparing against other mid-range phones
Pricing and availability
HTC U11 Life
HTC's Pixel-lite Android One handset
The HTC U11 Life includes premium features and Android One at a price point way below premium flagships. Buy one outright or on contract through Vodafone
- The HTC U11 Life sells outright for $599.
- The HTC U11 Life is also available from Vodafone on contract plan terms.
HTC U11 Life specs
Power, storage and battery
|Display size||5.2 inches|
|Resolution||1080 x 1920|
|Pixels per inch (PPI)||424|
|Rear camera megapixels||16MP|
|Rear camera aperture size||f/2.0|
|Front camera megapixels||16MP|
|Front camera aperture size||f/2.0|
|Dimensions||149.1mm x 72.9mm x 8.1mm|
|Network category speed||Category 11|
|Operating system||Android 8|
|External storage support||Up to 2TB|
Compare SIM-only plans for the HTC U11 Life
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