HTC demos what looks to be the U12 with gigabit LTE – The Verge – The Verge

HTC showcased a phone that’s rumored to be its next flagship, the U12, during a 5G event in Taiwan last week. While little is known about this mystery phone, the details seem to line up: HTC tends to release its flagships in the spring, so the timing is right, and it has a large, 18:9 screen with thin bezels, like the recent U11 Plus, suggesting it’s a higher-end device.

While the HTC phone was shown off at a 5G event, it isn’t strictly using 5G technology. Instead, it’s going to be using gigabit LTE tech that includes something known as Licensed Assisted Access, or LAA. LAA combines LTE with the unlicensed 5GHz Wi-Fi band for additional bandwidth. Right now, Qualcomm supports LAA on its Snapdragon 835 chip, so it’s likely that this mystery phone is also running a top-tier Snapdragon processor.

During the demo, HTC was able to reach a download speed of 809 Mbps on a local cell network. Hypothetically, LAA could let the U12 reach gigabit speeds, according to a video recorded by Sogi, a local phone news agency. That’s not an incredible accomplishment though, as the U11 was already a gigabit phone.

The device was shown at an event hosted by Chunghwa Telecom, Taiwan’s largest telecom company, which invited companies like Nokia and Asus that have also signed on to help build a 5G network on the island by 2020.

We’ve reached out to HTC for further information. An HTC spokesperson in the US said they would need 24 hours to contact their Taiwanese colleagues for a response.

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