What differentiates a squat from a deadlift?
Movement pattern; “Squatting” vs “Hinging”? Bar on shoulders vs. bar in hands?
My opinion: It’s the pattern.
Hex bars work work very well for full depth squatting, since your knees are free to move forward without the bar getting in the way.
They work particularly well for weightlifters who want to work on pulling heavy from the floor with a very upright torso; particularly if their training is getting stale and they want to add something unique to their program.