A couple of leaked Verizon charts popped up on Droid Life this morning, their contents? HTC Thunderbolt propaganda - well, at least in one of them.


If Verizon's estimated LTE speeds aren't just hot air, then Sprint and T-Mobile (and AT&T) should probably be worried right now. Sprint's smartphone plan price hike probably isn't winning them any points, and T-Mobile's 4G handsets aren't exactly new and exciting (G2, myTouch, or a rehashed Vibrant - take your pick).

I don't know where Verizon gets their network speed estimates for T-Mo and Sprint, but they seem pretty forgiving - given the speed ranges shown. 3-6Mbps down on WiMax is actually quite good (I hear from our EVO users that those are liberal estimates), but an upload speed of 500 Kbps doesn't exactly sound "next generation" to me. The vast speed range shown for T-Mobile indicate what I've heard from some T-Mobile users - even when they can get "4G," it's not exactly quick.

By comparison, my AT&T 3G connection with full signal outdoors achieves 3Mbps down and 1.5Mbps up. Those speeds are well within what T-Mobile calls "4G", while my upload speeds make WiMax look dated.

Some users of the Verizon 4G USB dongle have reported speeds in excess of 20Mbps on Verizon's LTE. That's more than three times as fast as the lowest tier of cable internet available in my area. Speeds will of course vary and inevitably drop as more users get on Verizon's 4G network, but their figures don't sound suspiciously optimistic: 5-12Mbps down sets a maximum well below what some of the early adopters have clocked in at. An upload speed of 2-5Mbps is impressive, as well.

This next picture is an "internal comparison" of high-end Verizon smartphones, including the iPhone 4. The Thunderbolt, though, sits at the beginning of the chart, with the iPhone 4 at the opposite end - probably to discourage the notion that they're competitors.


Anyway, as you can see, 4G is number three on the list of feature comparisons - a feature only one of the phones on the chart has. I apologize if what I'm extrapolating from this seems to be reaching, but I can almost guarantee there's a strategy to this chart: acknowledge the iPhone 4 exists, that it is a flagship device, and simultaneously make it obvious that if you want 4G, the Thunderbolt is your only option.

The Thunderbolt will bring more revenue to Verizon per handset sold than the iPhone 4, without a doubt. If the Thunderbolt ends up costing $250 on contract, it's safe to assume someone's making out like a bandit, and that the price is probably being inflated by the fact that it's the only 4G option available on Verizon for the moment. Add to that the premium cost of a 4G data plan (not confirmed, but almost a certainty) and it doesn't take a lot of calculus to see why Verizon wants you to buy this thing.

Source: Droid-Life

David Ruddock
David's phone is whatever is currently sitting on his desk. He is an avid writer, and enjoys playing devil's advocate in editorials, and reviewing the latest phones and gadgets. He also doesn't usually write such boring sentences.

  • lemetatron

    The info about the mt4g is inaccurate, 14.4 dl and 768 ram. From google.com/phone.

    • David Ruddock

      14.4Mbps? If that's what you're talking about, that's the HSPA+ theoretical maximum as it's currently configured on T-Mobile's network and on the MT4G/G2/SGS4G. No one gets those speeds. Verizon's theoretical LTE max speed is over double that as far as I'm aware.

      As for the RAM, that may be incorrect on Verizon's part! Intentional or not, I don't know.

      • Smooth3d

        The Tmo's HSPA+ network is 21mbps now but the G2 and the MT4G chipset only supports 14.4mbps. The upcoming Vibrant 4G (SGS4G) has a 21mbps radio in it.

        The 1st phone to do so, we will see what the real world speeds are when it launches.

        • David Ruddock

          I stand corrected - just checked T-Mo's website.

          Again, show me someone getting anything near that speed on T-Mobile and I'll eat my own shoes.

        • BobbyPhoenix

          Well I don't know about 4G speeds because I only have a Defy on T-Mo, but I get constant speeds around 5 down, and 1.5 up. I know that's not "blazing", but then again the Defy doesn't even support +. Just my opinion.

        • SN

          David, get ready to eat some shoes. 12.85mbps on T-Mobile using an HSPA+ data card. (webConnect Rocket)

  • Smooth3d

    With all do respect, Verizon needs to to get there specs striate on the MT4G. For all intent and purpose the Thunderbolt has the same specs as the MT4G except for a bigger screen and a 8 mpix cam vs 5 mpix cam.

    They both have the same 2nd gen Snapdragon cpu and 768MB of ram, not 528 like the chart says.

    P.S. the G2 and MT4G is not old and unexciting if you think the Thunderbolt is exciting, plus Verizon lte network is not stressed yet when it gets those high speeds.

    • David Ruddock

      Verizon's speed estimates on that chart are well below the observed speeds of current early adopters using the LTE USB dongle or those who had a chance to test the BIONIC and Thunderbolt at CES (as Artem and Brian can attest to).

      I would say those figures *are* based on estimated network load, and not like the theoretical maximums T-Mobile carelessly advertises.

      Verizon's LTE network is based on 3GPP, which can theoretically support speeds up to 100Mbits down and 50Mbits up, granted you would need multiple antennas and frequencies to achieve those speeds.

      At current, Verizon has not published their 4G network's "theoretical maximums" as it is currently configured.

  • http://www.slipshft.com Slipshft

    The speeds of the '4G' networks is of course skewed in favor of VZN, it's their ad. Why would they do otherwise. We see speed up to and past the 6Mbps that they state for Sprint (double and triple the speeds), but Sprint advertises a sustainable speed of only 3-6Mbps to compensate for the many users that are on the network. While VZN 5-12Mbps is currently sustainable, they have limited users (which is why you can see peak speeds grater than advertised), they also have not built out the network completely, which will hurt them if customer adoption is greater than they expect. Additionally, the network is severely limited in where you can use it. You can claim all the customer coverage in the world, but unless it is usable all the time to that customer, it's a hollow number.

    • David Ruddock

      I believe Verizon's 4G rollout will have made them the largest 4G provider by the end of this year, and by 2014 they plan to have the entire subscriber base covered by LTE.

      Verizon's goal is to maintain the 5-12Mbps rate as the national average - which is conservative given LTE's capabilities. I would argue fastidiously that Verizon's speed estimates are far more realistic than T-Mobile - and simply faster than Sprint.

      • SN

        You can argue all you want, it doesn't change the fact that I average 3-5mpbs and peak at about 9mbps on a myTouch 4g. T-Mobile's estimates are very reasonable and, based on actual experience, are probably understated. I don't doubt that LTE may be faster in some areas, but I question your strong stance on Verizon's LTE speed estimates when network speed, quality and capacity vary greatly from one neighborhood to the next. If my experiences are indicitive of standard HSPA+ capability, I expect HSPA+42 to generate real world speeds of up to 26mbps.

  • blksol5

    i know androidandme.com posted a facebook page back when tmobile first started all this 4g speed talks. it has user submitted pictures on speednet.com results.. some numbers are pretty damn impressive. i wish i had a direct link but i don't.. and i dont have time to look. might wanna look into it. id still take my g2. all though lte and a better camera does sound nice. but id rather save money on my price plan then switch to verizon. plus, tmobile may has spotty coverage. but its great where i live. everyone around me has tmobile..

  • Danny

    A bit misleading but again this is Verizon we're talking about. This is the same company whose over dramatic TV ad claimed they have the most advanced 4G LTE network "in the wooooooooooooooooooooooorrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrllllllllllllllllldddddddddddddddddd."

    They are also technically incorrrect by giving HSPA + a theoretical range of 1.5 Mbps on the low end. That's really HSPA speeds not HSPA +.

    Again marketing spin at work with Verizon.

    • David Ruddock

      Just because the low end falls within what are normal HSPA ranges does not somewhow make it "incorrect". There's no magical switch that gets flipped once your phone drops below a certain downlink speed - you can have HSPA+ connectivity at 1.5Mbps just as much as you can have it at 7Mbps. That doesn't change the fact that you're connected via HSPA+.

      Verizon's point is that T-Mobile has pretty irresponsibly called its HSPA+ network 4G when, on average, its speeds are comparable to AT&T's 3G, and generally fall well short of Sprint's WiMax for download speeds.

      It's rather important to remember that just because you as one consumer may live in a city or area with unusually fast HSPA+ (Eg, Seattle metro and suburban area for T-Mobile) that it does not mean this is "normal." All carriers have a vested interest in making their "home" areas or high value markets ideal coverage zones.

      T-Mobile, more than any carrier, is guilty of network speed hype, and to a degree I'd go out on a limb to say is irresponsible and maybe even knowingly misleading.

      • SN

        Wow, the more I read the more I can't decide if you are paid by Verizon for positive reviews or just have a vendetta against T-Mobile. Where do you live that has such horrible coverage and/or speed from T-Mobile? I'm from the Kansas City area where T-Mobile beats everyone on speed and coverage. Seriously, Sprint is a close second for most areas (with WiMax), but Verizon and AT&T are much slower.

        Guilty of speed hype? No one spends more money than AT&T and Verizon on advertisements and, unfortunately, they are the least likely to deliver the promised speed. Sure, Verizon has 3G coverage in far more rural areas, places I rarely if ever visit. I much prefer the faster, more consistent metropolitan speed provided by T-Mobile in areas I occupy 98% of the time.

        Is this AndroidPolice.com or GiveVZWFellatio.com? Seriously.

  • Greekboy

    Check out YouTube by greekthuglife69 see how Verizon treats their workers u already know how they treat u

  • NameJon

    These aren't accurate. Evo 4G not only gets between 5-10 mbs but it also can connect up to 8 not 5 people on the mobile hotspot feature.

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      It's true that it can connect 8. But 5-10 mbps in practice almost never happens, even in the strongest 4G areas. At least, in my experience in the Bay Area.

      • Sherwin Amiran

        It's very heavily dependent upon the region. Here in Chicagoland I generally hit 4-6 mbps.

        When I was in Sacramento, however, 12-15 Mbps was the norm; with something like 2-4 Mbps upload. That was pretty awesome.

      • Rich

        All depends on area and load. Although Verizon's numbers are skewed as it is their ad. I get okay reception in my house and with only one "bar" above the 4g symbol on my Evo I get 9mbps down and 1mbps up.

  • Daniel Greer

    I can tell already that some of those numbers are B.S. I have gotten 2 megs up in Tampa regularly, and Sprint hasn't even officially launched that market yet. Given some of Verizon's hinky marketing tactics in the past, I'm going to be taking any info like this with a grain of salt.

  • Kevin

    I have been on Verizon LTE since day one in Seattle and then at CES in Las Vegas. At one point at home - and VZ 3G has never been more than 700K (rare) on the download - I popped 13+M on the download and 6M on the upload. I've found speeds in the Seattle area to vary depending on day, time, location but all well within the 5-12M Verizon quotes.

    Now at CES in Las Vegas, colleagues were dying on 3G and, although I did notice one time when 4G was taxed, it typically it 3M/3M or much better during my time there when lotsa people were having trouble staying connected at all on AT&T's 3G. Sprint had better results as I recollect with 3G than AT&T and, I believe, hung in there on 4G.

  • blksol5

    found the link.. take it for what it is.. http://goo.gl/P0wk3

    i think someone owes us a shoe eating. =p

  • Smooth3d

    I think the author has been drinking the Verizon kool-aid. Will they have good speeds sure, but once it gets bogged down it will have slow downs like every other network will.

    Here in Tulsa, ok I get great speeds on my MT4G, and thats on a loaded network.

  • James Delahoussaye

    Ok, I have MT4g on Tmobile and in Cali I get around 3 mbps at best... at worst sometimes my iphone on ATT runs faster.

    That being said, I'm about to return the MT4G and wait for Verizon's roll out. Perhaps the Bionic

  • HawaiiD

    I average between 5 -9 MBPS DL and 1-1.3 MBPS UL with my Evo in Hawaii.I have hit 11 MBPS evey so often.Seems like Sprint has upgraded their 4g system recently in the past couple of months?
    I used to average about 2- 3 MBPS DL in 4g when I first got my Evo in September of last year.

  • http://www.dominikstriplin.com Dominik

    The fastest that I've gotten with my Overdrive was 9 MBPS but that was only once.

    I would normally get 3 MBPS with my Overdrive.

  • Brad Smith

    Will new Htc Thunderbolt work with sorenson vp
    (svrs.com/ntouch) in the video relay service???