Several new renders depicting what's said to be the HTC U12 appeared online earlier this week, having been spotted in an Amazon Japan listing of a thin protective case advertised as being made for the upcoming Android device. The smartphone is shown with four cameras, i.e. a dual-camera setup on both of its sides, as well as a nearly bezel-free design that still leaves enough room for a physical Home button on the front. While the HTC U12 has already been the subject of numerous rumors in recent months, the biggest takeaway from the latest leak that hasn't been mentioned by any previous reports is the overall thickness of the device that doesn't appear to surpass 6mm at most.
The viability of such a design remains somewhat dubious despite the fact that Chinese phone makers OPPO and Vivo already delivered several phones whose thickness hovered around the 5mm mark over three years ago. Regardless, with the majority of recent reports suggesting the U12 will be HTC's next Android flagship, it's unlikely the company will deliver such a thin device that would presumably be prone to overheating. The latest leak is also indicative of an 18:9 display panel which the Taiwanese original equipment manufacturer already adopted with the HTC U11 Plus late last year. A number of recently emerged rumors suggested HTC is considering a 4K screen for the U12 in a bid to attempt differentiating the device from its premium rivals, all of which are still expected to feature QHD(+) panels in 2018, with the exception of Sony-made flagships as the Japanese OEM already pioneered mobile 4K tech in late 2015.
The Taipei-based electronics maker is widely expected to announce the HTC U12 in the run-up to the 2018 iteration of Mobile World Congress scheduled to start in late February and should begin retailing the handset by spring. Following yet another disappointing year in the mobile segment, HTC decided to downsize its smartphone efforts in 2018 and is only planning on releasing a limited number of Android devices over the course of this year, as per the company's previous statements. The firm is now in the process of transitioning a portion of its mobile budget to VR solutions which it sees as its best long-term platform for sustainability.