A filing with the Federal Communications Commission has revealed that HTC is planning to release an update to the HTC U11 that will enable Bluetooth 5.0. It is not clear on why the manufacturer decided not to enable Bluetooth 5.0 despite the presence of hardware that supports the standard. This update may coincide with the upcoming release of Android 8.0 O, which has improved native support for Bluetooth Low-Energy 5.0 standard. Once activated by a software update, this standard allows for a massive increase in the range of Bluetooth signals alongside decreased impact on the device's battery life. In addition, the maximum data throughput of Bluetooth signals has been raised to 2Mbps, which is two times more than what is currently possible in a Bluetooth connection. The increased bandwidth also allows for the devices equipped with Bluetooth 5.0 to connect to two sets of wireless devices at the same time.
This is not the first time that an Android device is equipped with the newest Bluetooth standard. The Samsung Galaxy S8 and the Samsung Galaxy S8 Plus already support the aforementioned standard. However, some upcoming devices, including a likely variant of Asus' ZenFone 4 Pro line, has already passed the Bluetooth 5.0 certification process of the Bluetooth SIG. Moreover, Qualcomm has recently released mid-range chipsets that include support for the new standard, which could result in more devices that will take advantage of the improvements incorporated in the standard.
The addition of Bluetooth 5.0 support will add to the long list of features that the HTC U11 already sports. The device is already known for its 'Edge Sense' feature. This feature takes advantage of pressure sensors located at the sides of the handset by detecting the squeezes made by the device owner, which then triggers certain actions like opening an application. The HTC U11 also supports multiple personal assistants like Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa, and the manufacturer's own Sense Companion. Looking into the device's internals, the smartphone is powered by the Snapdragon 835, the current flagship offering from Qualcomm. The handset is also equipped with 4GB of RAM, 64GB of internal flash storage, and a 5.5-inch display with a QHD resolution.