First LTE phone, HTC Thunderbolt, coming to Verizon Thursday

Wirefly taking pre-orders starting Tuesday

HTC's ThunderBolt, the first smartphone to operate on Verizon Wireless's LTE network, will launch this Thursday, according to a document from Verizon received by the online retailer Wirefly.

Verizon officials did not respond to a request to confirm the March 17 sales date, which has been the rumored launch date since last week.

Wirefly is lending weight to the Thursday launch date, saying it will begin to take online pre-orders for the device at 3 a.m. ET tomorrow. Shipments of the device are set to begin on Thursday, Wirefly says.

Wirefly's special price, still unannounced, will be available when sales begin, a Wirefly spokesman said. The retailer has posted the full specs and other information on its site.

The spokesman said he had received a document from Verizon sent Monday that said, "The wireless devices group introduces the HTC ThunderBolt to the product line-up! The HTC ThunderBolt will launch on March 17, 2011!" The spokesman would not share a copy of the document, however.

The Thunderbolt has been teased in repeated national TV commercials for several weeks, almost back to the Consumer Electronics Show in early January, when Verizon first named it as one of 10 LTE-capable devices, including three other smartphones, that it will introduce by the middle of 2011.

The HTC ThunderBolt will be the first Verizon LTE phone, ahead of the other three planned LTE smartphones, including the LG Revolution, the Droid Bionic 4G and the Samsung 4G LTE. All have 4.3-in. screens and run Android.

LTE is advertised by Verizon as providing up to 10 times the speed of 3G speeds on Verizon provide, and LTE will average 6 Mbit/sec downloads. When 4G is not available, it will convert to 3G speeds.

Verizon officials have also said they will reveal more about upcoming data caps with the launch of the HTC Thunderbolt.

Wirefly's specs page notes the ThunderBolt's features, including two cameras -- an 8 megapixel primary camera, and a 1.3 megapixel secondary camera designed for video calls.

The Android 2.2 ThunderBolt will run a 1GHz processor and includes a 32GB Micro SD card pre-installed.

In addition to Wi-Fi, and hot spot capabilities it includes an FM radio.

Wirefly calls attention to the fact that as Verizon's first LTE smartphone, it will be the first to simultaneously support both voice and data, something not possible on Verizon's 3G network, notably missing from the iPhone 4.

Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld. Follow Matt on Twitter at @matthamblen or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed. His e-mail address is mhamblen@computerworld.com.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags consumer electronicshtcsmartphonesPhonesVerizon Wireless

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Matt Hamblen

Computerworld (US)
Show Comments

Father’s Day Gift Guide

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Armand Abogado

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

Wireless printing from my iPhone was also a handy feature, the whole experience was quick and seamless with no setup requirements - accessed through the default iOS printing menu options.

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?