HTC U11 case round-up

In tandem with my big review of the HTC U11, I've been kindly sent a batch of top U11 cases by Mobile Fun, so let's get started...

HTC U11 Genuine Leather Flip case, £35

This is the most premium option here, perhaps not in terms of 'feeling the leather' (though it is genuine), in that you get quality materials in a flip case that's super-protective yet doesn't make the U11 feel un-manageably thick.
The colour is advertised as 'Dark grey' and this  is accurate on the outside though it's black on the inside. The phone sits in  a clear plastic shell that's minimalist and glued to the back of the flip case in such a way that the entire fold can be angled to provide a landscape stand when needed:
This works surprisingly well and never feels flimsy.
The front flap of the case contains a rigid material, almost certainly metal, since it can't be easily bent, and there's a card slot for a bank card or similar.
Overall, I was really, really impressed by this U11 option. This is HTC's official solution and I can see why, even though the excellent leather build means that the phone's 'bling' can't be seen. Which is a good thing from my point of view as this case makes the phone a lot more understated, adding protection without adding too much thickness.

Olixar Utra-Thin Gel case, £7

I'm always a fan of keeping cases simple and this Olixar clear TPU option does a good job of making the U11 grippy and yet without losing sight of the multi-layered finish on the U11's back:
In fact, the case is so thin that it's hard to tell in the photos that the case is in place. Which is a good thing from the cosmetics point of view but there's an Achilles heel...
Unlike many other TPU in-situ cases, there's no extension around the front of the phone, protecting the fragile stressed curved U11 glass screen from impacts. This is, obviously, a design compromise, sacrificing protection for minimising the impact on user swipes across the screen edges, but I think Olixar has gone too far here in stripping back the plastic.

There's minimal actual protection, all you're basically getting is making a slippery phone less hard to drop.
Which may be enough for you? The case is certainly affordable.

Olixar U11 Executive Wallet Case, £20

If thickness is no object then this Olixar design is for you. Get this - thick leather, space for two credit cards, a genuine internal kickstand mechanism (with magnets) - and yes, your U11 will end up almost an inch thick once in place!
It's all a little over the top, in honesty, the leather itself is cheaper and thicker than in the HTC design above, plus it's based on cardboard inners, again thicker than an aluminium sheet. You can get an idea of the dimensions involved from the photo below, showing how far recessed the U11's camera is!
Then there's the kickstand system, with a whole extra layer of materials, kicking out and semi-locking with magnets. In practice this can be set at around three possible angles, though by far the most natural is at about 45 degrees:
Although it's hard to argue at all this for 'only' £20, this Olixar folio design also exemplifies most people's preconceptions about flip cases. Thick, heavy, bulky and often getting in the way - even the buttons on the U11's sides feel hard to reach and use.
Still, a case for every occasion, eh? But I'd still much rather have the simpler and thinner HTC folio, despite the (nearly double) price.


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