Verizon Wireless on Thursday confirmed that it is in the process of rolling out an over the air update for its HTC ThunderBolt smartphone. Software build number 1.13.605.7 will improve the ThunderBolt’s ability to move data over Verizon’s 3G network, and it includes messaging improvements as well. Other features listed by Verizon Wireless as being fixed or improved in this update include device activation time, GPS start up time and accuracy, and stability of apps like, Facebook, KAYAK and My Verizon. Users will receive a notification on their devices once the update is available for download. More →
As much as we loved the HTC ThunderBolt when we reviewed it this past March, we can certainly understand if some people are hesitant to spend $250 on a new smartphone — even if it does run on the fastest cellular network in the country. If you fall into that category of intrigued smartphone buyers who just cant stomach parting with that much money up front, you’re in luck. AmazonWireless has brought back its previous sale price for the ThunderBolt. That’s right, just $129.99, a smartphone data plan and a two-year contract will get you all the 4G’d Froyo you can handle — but only for a limited time.
UPDATE: To clarify, during this sale the ThunderBolt is $129.99 for new customers, $174.99 for existing customers upgrading on an individual account, and $199.99 for existing customers upgrading a line on a family plan. More →
As reported, Apple has updated its all-in-one desktop computer line, the iMac, with Intel’s latest processor family and improved specifications. Available in both 21.5-inch and 27-inch models, the new iMac can be configured with quad-core Sandy Bridge processors starting at 2.5 GHz and will come standard with AMD Radeon HD graphics cards, 4GB of RAM, and a 500MB or 1TB hard drive. The computers will also include Apple’s new Thunderbolt I/O port for high-speed data transfers. “Starting at $1,199, the new iMac is up to 70 percent faster and new graphics deliver up to three times the performance of the previous generation,” reads the press release. “The iMac continues to feature its signature aluminum and glass design, gorgeous IPS LED-backlit high resolution display, SD card slot and comes with Apple’s innovative Magic Mouse or Magic Trackpad.” The press release is after the break.
Verizon Wireless has announced that it will issue a software update for the HTC ThunderBolt on May 3rd. The update will enhance the connectivity to Verizon’s 3G network – when a 4G signal isn’t available, of course – and will also fix some email and SMS bugs so that messages are stored properly in your inbox. Verizon also said that, after the patch is applied, the Backup Assistant application will display properly in the applications menu. Other fixes include faster loading of GPS updates and stability improvements for Facebook, KAYAK, Yahoo! Mail, My Verizon, and others. Unfortunately, the update doesn’t appear to offer any improvements to the ThunderBolt’s notoriously bad battery life. More →
Verizon Wireless’ HTC ThunderBolt has been a big seller for the nation’s top carrier so far. In the two weeks that Verizon’s first 4G LTE-capable smartphone has been available, the carrier has activated an impressive 260,000 units. Those are great numbers, especially when considering the steep $250 price tag on the device. Those who yearn for 4G LTE but who can’t quite stomach the thought of paying that much for a cell phone will be happy to learn that they will soon be able to purchase a ThunderBolt from AmazonWireless for just over half that price. From midnight tonight through midnight on April 25th, Amazon is offering the ThunderBolt for just $129.99 with a two-year contract. Amazon will also toss in free two-day shipping to sweeten the deal, though we’re not sure it really needed any sweetening — BGR reviewed the HTC ThunderBolt last month and found it to be a great smartphone with the fastest cellular data service we’ve ever tested. More →
AT&T on Wednesday reported impressive first-quarter iPhone activations that hardly seemed affected by the carrier’s recent loss of iPhone exclusivity. Now, investment research firm ITG is suggesting Verizon Wireless’ iPhone 4 might not even be the carrier’s top seller anymore. As reported by the New York Post, ITG claims that the 4G LTE-capable HTC ThunderBolt overtook the iPhone last month to become Verizon’s No. 1 smartphone. The Post did not report March sales figures for the ThunderBolt or the iPhone, though it did say Verizon had only sold a total of 2 million iPhone 4 units through the end of March. Apple is scheduled to report its second-quarter earnings on Wednesday, and analysts are expecting iPhone sales to total 16-17 million units. More →
Android enthusiast blog Android Central has obtained what appears to be an internal Verizon Wireless document that compares the upcoming Samsung DROID Charge to four other Verizon smartphones. The sheet lays out the Charge’s specs next to the HTC ThunderBolt, the Samsung Fascinate, the Motorola DROID 2 Global and the Apple iPhone 4, and the upcoming 4G phone certainly holds its ground against each device. The only previously unknown feature revealed by the document is the DROID Charge’s enhanced mobile hotspot functionality, which will support up to five devices in 3G coverage areas and up to 10 devices when connected to 4G. Finally, we should note that one key category — battery life — is noticeably absent from the comparison sheet. Considering the Charge’s massive display, 4G LTE compatibility and enhanced mobile hotspot feature, interested parties should likely plan on picking up an extra battery or three should they opt to buy a DROID Charge following its launch. Hit the jump for the full internal comparison sheet. More →
Looking to get your LTE on without breaking the bank? Third party wireless retailer Wirefly has Verizon’s coveted HTC ThunderBolt handset priced for a very svelte $149.99. Now through Monday, interested, eligible parties can add the ThunderBolt to their shopping cart, agree to a new two-year service term, and enter the code THUNDER0418 at checkout to take advantage of the deal. The site’s link is waiting for you after the break. More →
Have an HTC ThunderBolt and a burning desire to use Skype’s video chat service? You’re in luck, because the gang over at Droid-Life have discovered a leaked iteration of the Internet communication client that is video-chat ready. The client, which was expected to ship with the ThunderBolt at the time of its announcement, can only be installed on Verizon’s first LTE smartphone… at the moment. If you’re interested in taking the software for a spin, hit the read link and have yourself a download. More →
HTC has reportedly confirmed a pesky bug impacting the audio on video recordings captured with Verizon Wireless’ new HTC ThunderBolt smartphone. The bug, according to several ThunderBolt owners who have taken to forums to discuss the issue, causes the audio to be muffled on video files captured using the device’s camcorder function. The bug is intermittent, so only some video recordings are affected. According to enthusiast blog Android Central, HTC has acknowledged the issue and has stated that a fix is currently in the works. In the meantime, third-party video recorders are seemingly unaffected by the bug, so there are several alternatives that can be used until HTC releases its fix. More →
In our review of Verizon’s first LTE-capable smartphone, the HTC ThunderBolt, we told you about a minor gripe we had with the device: battery life. It’s true, powering a 4.3-inch screen and a handful of wireless radios can take its toll on battery life, so we were shocked to find that the ThunderBolt did not have a carrier-supported method for turning off the device’s 4G radio. The handset is sold in markets where Verizon’s next-generation wireless network is currently unavailable, and power-users often like to toggle the feature on and off as needed. While this functionality may not be included out of the box, the open nature of Android has brought a simple application to the Market to help you out. Dubbed LTE OnOFF, the 11KB application allows you to toggle LTE in three simple clicks. Open the app, click “OK” on the instructions page, and select “CDMA auto” for LTE-less operation. The applications creators describe the code as follows:
Like all the paid LTE “Switch” and “Toggles”, just faster, smaller and free. Simple, to the point. Distribute freely.
LTE OnOFF is sitting in the Android Market, just waiting to be downloaded. If you’re a ThunderBolt owner looking for an easier way to toggle your 4Gs, enjoy.
BTIG Research analyst Walter Piecyk says HTC’s latest beastly smartphone for Verizon Wireless is going toe to toe with the iPhone 4, and is even outselling Apple’s iPhone at many Verizon Wireless store locations. Piecyk and his team made calls to 150 different Verizon Wireless stores across 22 major U.S. cities, asking which device was selling better. According to the analyst’s report, 61% of stores said the two devices were selling at about the same rate, 11% said the iPhone 4 was selling faster and 28% said they were selling more ThunderBolt smartphones than iPhones. This anecdotal evidence suggests a solid launch for Verizon Wireless, and it further supports recent data that large-screen smartphones are continuing to grow in popularity. We reviewed the HTC ThunderBolt recently and called it the fastest cell phone we’ve ever tested. More →
With the ThunderBolt, HTC has delivered yet another “first 4G smartphone” following its EVO 4G for Sprint (and the often forgotten MAX 4G introduced in 2008). It’s the first handset to run on Verizon’s brand new 4G LTE network, and it’s an Android smartphone powerhouse that is easily the fastest smartphone on the planet in terms of data speeds. That’s not to say the device is perfect, however. The release of Verizon’s first 4G handset was pushed back several times, spanning almost two months, and I’m not so sure all of the wrinkles were ironed out even after all of the delays. But the ThunderBolt is finally here and I’ve spent some quality time with it over the past week or so. Read on to see if this is not only the fastest smartphone on the planet, but one of the best as well.