HTC ThunderBolt Might Not Debut Until Mid-March

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When Verizon first announced the HTC ThunderBolt, the carrier said this cutting-edge smartphone wouldn’t be available until March. Despite a number of unconfirmed reports that the debut would be in February, that first estimate now looks like its going to be accurate.

This model was unveiled early last month, and will will be Verizon’s first 4G smartphone. Other high-end features in this Google Android OS 2.2, smartphone will include a very large display and 32 GB of storage capacity.

The national retailer Best Buy to start taking pre-orders for the ThunderBolt on Feb. 7. This created the expectation that the debut was just around the corner, but customers are still waiting weeks later.

HTC ThunderBoltIn the last few weeks, various published reports have indicated that the device was going to debut on Feb. 14, Feb. 24., and Feb. 28.

The most recent information comes from an internal document that has leaked out of Best Buy. This apparently shows that the ThunderBolt will be released on Thursday, March 10.

And the Price Is….?
The launch date for the HTC ThunderBolt isn’t the only mystery surrounding this model. There’s some contradictory evidence about its price, too.

Unconfirmed reports have indicated that Verizon might ask more than the typical cost of a high-end smartphone. Rather than $200 with contract, information leaking out of the retailer Best Buy indicates that the price is going to be either $250 or $300 with a two-year contract. 

HTC ThunderBolt Overview
As one of the first smartphones 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, though.

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.

HTC ThunderBolt Hands-on PreviewOther features are going to include Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity, a digital compass, GPS, a proximity sensor, and a G-sensor.

As mentioned earlier, it will have a front-facing camera and support for video conferencing.

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