HTC’s next phone will be squeezable

HTC has confirmed rumors that its upcoming new smartphone — the U — will be squeezable. That doesn’t mean the Taiwanese firm is about to ship a rubber device. Rather, the phone’s metal frame will include embedded sensors that enable its owner to control settings and make gestures by squeezing its sides or swiping up and down on them, according to a VentureBeat report from prolific smartphone insider Evan Blass.

In other words, smartphone controls will no longer be limited to the screen.

It’s an intriguing prospect, and we’ll know more when the device is unveiled on May 16, according to today’s HTC teaser. You can expect the company to shed more light on the squeeze mechanics and other features before that date.

HTC will hope that the U and its quirks make a larger dent than the U Ultra, which has already gotten a 20 percent price cut to increase its appeal despite going on sale just weeks ago.