Of the 565,000 (500,000 is the number Verizon added to its subscriber base in Q1) 4G users, about 260,000 are utilizing Verizon's LTE service via an HTC Thunderbolt. This means that since the launch of the Thunderbolt on March 17, Verizon has been gaining over 100,000 new LTE subscribers a week.
Verizon's doing about as well keeping the Charge under wraps as Sprint did with the EVO Shift 4G - and now, the Samsung DROID has shown up on Walmart's online wireless store, albeit only in the form of a stock photo:
For a phone that's still unannounced (technically), and reportedly being released tomorrow, Verizon doesn't seem too concerned with generating fanfare for its second LTE device.
After the release date flip-flopping on the Thunderbolt, it wouldn't surprise in the least if the Charge was facing a [sort of expected] minor delay.
It appears Verizon has altered the terms of its "Certified Like New Program" ("CLNP") (pray they don't alter them further) to be a lot more demanding regarding the condition of exchanged devices.
Namely, if you send in your destroyed DROID, don't expect to get a shiny new replacement without a serious penalty - all phones sent in on warranty exchange must now meet the following requirements:
CLNR Cosmetics Standards
CLNR Cosmetic Standard Summary:
- No blemishes are permitted on front surfaces such as the touch screen, keyboard
- No more than two flaws, which must be less than 5mm in length, are permitted on other surfaces
- No flaws or defects on lens
- No dust, dirt, or fibers under lens
- Ports must be free of foreign material and corrosion, be in operating condition, and have the plugs in place if applicable
This means even if your Android device suffers from a warrantied defect and fails, you may be out of luck trying to get it exchanged if you haven't kept it in tip-top condition.
Droid-life just dropped an exciting informational tidbit for Incredible owners to mull over: the device may be getting the Gingerbread bump some at the end of the second quarter. The upgrade to 2.3 will entail all of the optimizations made to the Android OS since Froyo's release almost a year ago, and hopefully will provide Incredible owners with the newest version of HTC's Sense UI.
The tip came via an email from an HTC rep in response to a customer's help ticket:
Conspiracy theorists would have you believe that the ThunderBolt's signed (and locked) bootloader was all Verizon's doing, but it appears that isn't quite the case - the Incredible S, one of HTC's unlocked GSM phones, is shipping with a similar failsafe system. That basically means no custom ROMs for you (at least until a viable workaround is discovered).
Proof? Look no further than the contents of this Incredible S RUU:
From what our friends at AndIRC can tell (note that they don't have a device in hand), the Incredible S includes a signature check much like the one on the ThunderBolt.
Just a couple of days ago I was ranting at Best Buy's preposterous announcement that they were going to hike the price of the HTC Thunderbolt, starting on March 20, from its launch price of $249.99 to a staggering $299.99. Apparently someone in the land of BB thought twice about this plan, as the folks over at Droid Life bring us news that the retailer is now changing its tune.
A couple of weeks ago, EA released Bejeweled 2 to the Android Market, and many Bejeweled fans jumped on it like bees on honey. Most found the game in the Market just fine for $2.99, but others were stumped when they saw a whopping $7.99 price tag.
Those others were all Verizon customers, as we found out after digging in, because apparently EA decided to release 2 separate, but otherwise exactly identical versions of the game - one for VZW customers and one for everyone else.
Told you so - the price of the XOOM will indeed be significantly less than $1,200 (at least according to Motorola CEO Sanjay Jha). In fact, if you decide to take the WiFi-only route, the tablet will cost just $600 - half of the price Best Buy put up (and subsequently took down). 3G connectivity will come with a $199 premium (jacking the price up to $799), though it's worth noting that the XOOM's radio will see an LTE upgrade sometime down the road.
Last week our friends at WireFly unboxed the HTC Thunderbolt, but spent little time actually using the device. They left us with a few tantalizing tidbits though, saying "this phone cranks," and promising a full video review, as well as head-to-head comparisons with the iPhone 4 and the EVO 4G. Yesterday, the last of the three videos went up - let's take a look.
The review video is just over 8 minutes long.