The hotly-anticipated HTC ThunderBolt can now be pre-ordered exclusively from the retailer Best Buy, essentially confirming that this Android OS model is going to start reaching customer's hands later this month.
The ThunderBolt is going to be Verizon's first smartphone with support for its 4G network, plus it will have a range of other high-end features, like a very large screen and a fast processor.
Those who are interested in this model can now put in a pre-order at a Best Buy store. Doing so requires putting down a $50 deposit at one of this retailer's brick-and-mortar stores -- pre-orders can not be placed online.
Price and Release Date?
Even though pre-orders can be placed, the release date for the ThunderBolt has not yet been announced. All that Best Buy says is that it is "Coming Soon".
At one point, Verizon said this model wouldn't be on the market until March at the earliest, but last week the company said the release "May be sooner than we expected".
Unconfirmed reports based on information that has leaked out of this carrier have said the launch is going to be Feb. 14. However, there have been indications that the debut may have been moved back to make it farther away from Verizon's launch of the iPhone on Feb. 10.
The price for this model has yet to be officially announced or leak out.
HTC ThunderBolt Overview
As its first smartphone with the 4G standard LTE, the ThunderBolt will offer data transfer speeds of 5 to 12 Mbps for downloads and 2 to 5 Mbps upload speeds under real world conditions. For comparison, tests on this carrier's current 3G network gave download speeds of 0.6 to 1.6 Mbps and upload speeds of 0.5 to 0.8 Mbps.
Aside from this, though, the device isn't going to be a huge jump above high-end smartphones that were released last year. It is still going to be fully-packed with features.
This starts with a 4.3-inch WVGA screen set in a bar shape with a kickstand on the back.
This model from HTC is going to run Google's Android OS 2.2 (Froyo) with HTC's Sense overlay on a 1 GHz processor. It won't have a significant amount of internal storage capacity, but will have a microSD card slot with a bundled 32 GB card.
It will have a front-facing camera and support for video conferencing. This will eventually be supplied by Skype, but this app might not be included when the HTC ThunderBolt first ships.
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