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 smartphoneshtcPhonesconsumer electronicsVerizon 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

Cool Tech

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?