Problems with the HTC U 11 and how to fix them

The HTC U 11 is a return to form for a company that has stumbled over the past few years, with HTC opting for an all new design and build for their latest flagship, along with the unique squeeze feature that definitely grows on you. Add to that top of the line specifications, an impressive camera, solid battery life, dust and water resistance, and excellent audio experience, what you get with the U 11 is a very compelling smartphone.

That said, as is the case with any current generation smartphone or tablet, the latest HTC flagship is not without its issues. Which is why, we’ve rounded up some of the common problems that HTC U 11 users have come across, and offer potential solutions on how to fix them!

Disclaimer: Not every HTC U 11 user will come across these problems. In fact, it is more than likely that you won’t face any of these issues at all.


Problem #1 – Windows 10 not recognizing the phone

Some users have found that when the phone is plugged into their PC, it doesn’t recognize the U 11’s internal storage, making it impossible to transfer files to the phone. The HTC Sync Manager also fails to recognize the device.

Potential solutions:

  • Make sure that the USB drivers are updated on your PC, that the phone is updated, and that the cable isn’t at fault. HTC also has a detailed checklist available for when the HTC Sync Manager fails to recognize the phone which you can find here.
  • While the step above has worked for a few people, the issue seems to occur when the phone is plugged into the USB 3.0 port of the PC for the majority of users. If your computer also has a USB 2.0 port, the device will be recognized if you plug it into that port.

Problem #2 – microSD card issues

Some users have come across a message that says that the SD card is corrupt. Others have also seen persistent notifications that state that the SD card has been unmounted.

Potential solutions:

  • As far as the SD card unmounted/mounted issue is concerned, it is something that is expected to be fixed with a software update that is currently rolling out.
  • In the other case, make sure that the microSD card is actually working fine by plugging it into another phone or your PC. If it is, back up all the data on the SD card first and then put it back in the U 11. On getting the SD card corrupted notification, opt to do a complete format. Then go to the Storage section in the Settings menu and do a Safe Eject. You can now move your files back on to the microSD card, and put it back into the phone while the device is powered off. The card should now be recognized and work as expected.

Problem #3 – Audio and video out of sync

A few users have found that while watching videos, particularly on Youtube or those sent on Whatsapp, the video gets stuck after a few seconds and when it restarts, the audio and video are out of sync.

Potential solutions:

  • While this is unlikely to be an issue with the apps in question, it’s a good idea to make sure that they are up to date.
  • Luckily, there is a simple solution to this issue. Simply wiping the cache partition seems to have done the trick for most users. You can find the instructions on how to do so in the Guides section below.

Problem #4 – Not receiving messages or calls on Verizon

The unlocked version of the phone that is available directly from HTC in the US is supposed to be compatible with Verizon Wireless, but some users have had difficulty receiving calls, and far more prominently, don’t receive messages.

Potential solutions:

  • As far as the not receiving calls issue is concerned, the problem is related to the SIM card. If you have just used your older Verizon SIM with the U 11, there may some compatibility issues. You will have to go to the Verizon store to get a new SIM card, which should be available to you for free. Once you swap the SIM, it should now be possible to make and receive calls.
  • A SIM switch may help with regards to not receiving text messages as well, but for some users, the solution has been a touch more complicated. You have to call Verizon customer care and ask them to turn off or remove “CDMA-less Provisioning,” which is causing the text messages to be blocked.
  • The issue might also have to do with the unlocked phone not being properly activated on the network. After following the step above, make sure to check with the CSR that the phone is fully activated. Once that is done, the device should now work as expected.

Problem #5 – No headphone jack

HTC is able to provide a great audio experience with the included USB-C USonic earphones, but the lack of a headphone jack has resulted in a couple of problems. First, if you want to use your regular headphones, a 3.5 mm adapter is available in the box. However, some users have faced a problem with getting it to work. Secondly, the use of the USB-C port for audio means that you are unable to charge your phone while listening to music, which is an issue for some users.

Potential solutions:

  • For the first issue where the headphone jack adapter doesn’t work, keep in mind that the first time you plug it in, a notification for a firmware update will pop up. You can also get the update and manage the adapter by downloading the HTC Audio Jack Adapter Toolkit from the Google Play Store here.
  • If the update notification doesn’t appear when you first plug in the adapter, it is best to uninstall the app, restart the phone, and try again. It may take a couple of tries before it works.
  • As far as the second problem is concerned, there is unfortunately no simple solution available. One option would be to use a Bluetooth headset while the device is charging. Another would be to buy a hub with multiple USB-C ports so you can plug in the charger and the 3.5 mm adapter or the USonic earphones at the same time. However there don’t seem to be a lot of reliable options available as yet. Hopefully HTC themselves will have a solution available.

Problem #6 – Issues where the only option is to wait for a software update

There are are few bugs and issues that show up with every smartphone where a workaround isn’t currently available, and the only option is to wait for a software update. In the case of hardware issues and failures, your only option will be to get a replacement device.

  • Edge Sense – Edge Sense gives you the option to set the squeeze force based on your requirements. However, some people have come across glitches where the edges are either extremely sensitive or require a lot more force than what was initially set. This is a new feature and there will be some teething problems, and HTC will continue to make improvements with future software updates.
  • Cell standby battery drain – Many users have reported seeing cell standby as one of the major causes for battery drain. However, there doesn’t actually seem to be any battery drain, with users getting the expected performance and screen on time from the device. A future software update may fix the issue with the numbers that are showing up in the battery section.
  • sRGB mode – A sRGB Mode is currently available in the Developer options, but some users have reported that it doesn’t seem to work when enabled, and automatically turns off when exiting the Settings menu. A future software update will not only fix this problem, but introduce the sRGB mode/vivid mode in the Display settings.
  • Alexa –  The U 11 comes with the support of multiple AI assistants like Google Assistant, HTC’s own Sense Companion, and Amazon Alexa. However, Alexa support is still disabled for now, and will be available with an upcoming update.

Problem #7 – Connectivity issues

As is the case with any new device, you may find yourself facing some connectivity issues with Bluetooth and Wi-Fi. Both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi issues have been found with the HTC U 11.

Potential solutions:

Wi-Fi issues

  • Turn the device and the router off for at least ten seconds, then turn them back and retry the connection.
  • Go to Settings – Power saving and ensure that this option is turned off.
  • Use the Wi-Fi Analyzer to check how crowded your channel is, and switch to a better option.
  • Forget the Wi-Fi connection by going to Settings – Wi-Fi and long tapping the connection you want, then selecting “Forget”. Re-enter the details and try again.
  • Make sure the router firmware is up to date.
  • Make sure the applications and software on the device are up to date.
  • Go into Wi-Fi – Settings – Advanced and make a note of your device MAC address, then make sure that it is allowed access in the router’s MAC filter.

Bluetooth issues

  • With issues when connecting to the car, check the manufacturer’s manual for the device and the car and reset your connections.
  • Ensure that you are not missing a vital part of the connection process.
  • Go to Settings – Bluetooth and ensure nothing needs changing
  • Go into Settings – Bluetooth delete all prior pairings and try setting them up again from scratch.
  • When it comes to issues with multiple device connection, only a future update will be able to address this problem.

Guides – Hard reset, soft reset, boot into Safe Mode, wipe cache partition

Hard Reset

  • First, make sure that you have backed up any important files and content you might you saved on your phone.
  • Go to Settings – Backup & Reset.
  • Tap on Factory Data Reset.
  • If you want to save the content of your SD card, make sure that “Erase SD card” isn’t selected.
  • Tap Reset Phone – OK.

Hard Reset – hardware buttons

  • Turn off the device.
  • Press and hold the volume down key. Then press the power button until the phone vibrates, then release the power button, but keep the volume down key pressed until a screen with red and blue text appears.
  • Use the volume down key to navigate to “reboot to bootloader” and press the power button to select it.
  • Another screen will then appear, where you can use the volume down key to navigate to “boot to recovery mode.”
  • Using the volume down key to “Wipe data/Factory Reset.”
  • Select “Yes — delete all user data” to confirm the whole operation.
  • After that select option “reboot system now.”
  • You can also go into Settings – Backup and Reset and tap on “Reset Phone.”
  • Keep in mind that performing a Factory Reset will erase all your data, so don’t forget to backup anything important you might have.

Soft Reset

  • If the display is off, first press the power button to turn it on.
  • Then press and hold the power button and tap on Restart.
  • If the device is not responding, press and hold the power button and volume down key simultaneously until the phone vibrates and then release the buttons. You may have to press and hold the keys for up to 15 seconds.

Boot into Safe Mode

  • When the phone is on, press and hold the power button.
  • In the pop up menu, press and hold Power Off.
  • When you see “Reboot to Safe Mode,” tap on OK.
  • Restart the phone to go back to the normal mode.
  • You can also boot into Safe Mode using hardware buttons. When the phone is off, press the power button to turn on the device.
  • When you see the HTC logo on the screen, press and hold the volume down key until you see Safe Mode written at the lower portion of the screen.

Wipe cache partition

  • Use the first four steps in the “Factory Reset” section to go into Recovery Mode.
  • Press the volume down key to “wipe cache partition” and then press the power button to select.

So, there you have it for this roundup of some of the common problems that HTC U 11 users come across, and potential solutions on how to fix them! If you have faced any other issues, do let us know in the comments section below and we’ll try our best to find a fix or workaround for you.

Until then, don’t let this small list of issues deter you from picking what is still a great smartphone. A lot of these issues will likely be fixed with future updates, and the device has a lot to offer, particularly if you’re looking for a solid camera and great audio experience with your smartphone.