However, thanks to Amazon Wireless, haters now have one less reason to pick on the ThunderBolt: the online retailer is selling Verizon's first LTE phone for just $179.99 - $70 less than the official $249.99 price.
A couple of super-sneaky members over at Howard Forums have leaked some photos of the upcoming Droid 3, and it's looking much thinner than its most recent predecessor. The Verizon phone, which has not yet been officially announced, popped up in three different pictures today.
As you can see below, the second sequel to Motorola's popular Droid has a thinner top piece to conceal the customary full QWERTY keyboard. Not much else is known about the phone at this point, but this could be shaping up to be a much more attractive offering than its ancestor in the Droid line.
Just when we thought that news about the HTC Thunderbolt was going to die down now that the mystery of its long-anticipated launch has been solved, word comes that Best Buy will only be offering the LTE phone at the $249.99 price until March 20 -after which it will be $299.99. While the phone has generated a lot of buzz, it's hard not to view this price hike as Best Buy shooting themselves in the foot.
Now that there is finally a firm release date for the HTC Thunderbolt (Thursday, March 17, in case you have been in a cave), we thought it would be fun to take a little poll to see just how many of you are willing to forgive the frustration you were put through by all of the delays, or if you have already moved on?
Let us know below where you stand on the HTC Thunderbolt.
Take a deep breath - it's really starting to look like the Thunderbolt saga is approaching the end. Verizon's first 4G LTE device has been through a rollercoaster of predictions, disappointments, and broken promises (over and over), but the latest confirmed date of March 17th we told you about earlier is indeed proving to be legitimate.
As promised, Wirefly just launched the Thunderbolt pre-order page, and if you've been waiting to pick one up, you may be pleasantly surprised.
They say "talk is cheap" - and these days it seems like every major US wireless carrier is claiming to have the fastest 4G (of course 4G is a highly debatable marketing term that describes three vastly different networks, but that's fodder for another post altogether). It's relatively easy to tune all of the marketing hype out but, when presented with some solid numbers, it gets easier to pay attention. PC World has tried to give us some raw data to work with in their profiling of the data speeds on the four major providers.
Way to pour salt on your customers' wounds there,
Verizon authorized Verizon retailer: pictures have surfaced of a new flyer arriving in customers' homes (obtained by Droid Life) that shows the HTC Thunderbolt with the words "Now Available" beneath it. No, this isn't an unexpected dream come true for Verizon customers, it seems like a flub by an authorized dealer (it's unclear to us which one) that certainly can't help calm the restless natives.
Have you ever been annoyed by SMS spam that attempts to convince you to pay for new Paris Hilton ringtones or something else you probably don't want? It appears that Verizon Wireless has too, as they have filed a federal lawsuit outlining a fraudulent SMS scheme that targeted its customers.
Among the violations that the scammers allegedly performed on Verizon customers:
- misappropriating approved short codes for unapproved “shadow” campaigns that did not comply with Verizon Wireless’ consumer protection and disclosure policies
- blocking certain IP addresses from accessing the websites associated with these shadow campaigns
- re-directing visitors to shell websites, preventing Verizon Wireless and its auditors from finding the shadow campaign websites in the normal course of monitoring Premium SMS campaigns for compliance
Customers who think they might have been on the receiving end of this scheme and think they might be entitled to a refund can visit www.premiumsmsrefunds.com to get the full scoop.
Yesterday, we heard that yet another (unconfirmed) HTC Thunderbolt "release date" was a big dud, but today, we have some even more disappointing news for eager LTE customers: Verizon chief technology officer Tony Melone said that customers will have 4G phones in their hands "by the end of the second quarter." Yes, that would mean by the end of June - probably not anytime soon. While Melone intended to highlight their pursuit of excellence in this interview, I think most of us can already hear the collective groan from Verizon customers who have been anticipating the upcoming HTC Thunderbolt.
You can chalk up another false rumor on the list of "impending releases" for the HTC Thunderbolt. The latest speculation to be debunked is that the March 10 date that had been teased is a no-go, according to a leaked Verizon chart picked up by Droid Life. The internal memo shows the much-delayed Verizon phone falling sometime after the iPad 2 launch (which is March 11).
This news makes sense, as, despite the anticipation for the first 4G phone on Verizon's LTE network, the iPad 2 launch would likely take priority with Big Red.