Verizon Set to Relase First 4G Phone
Verizon has announced plans to release their first 4G LTE powered smartphone, the HTC Thunderbolt, on March 17th. The phone will cost $249.99 with a two-year contract.
The smartphone powered by Android 2.2, will be the first handset to use Verizon’s 4G LTE network. Even though the MetroPCS beat Verizon to the market for 4G LTE smartphones, the Thunderbolt will be the first widely available and distributed 4G LTE smartphone in the U.S.
Verizon customers must subscribe to a 4G data plan, starting at $30 per month, for the Thunderbolt. If you combine it with voice, the minimum monthly fee becomes $70 per month. The mobile Hotspot feature add an additional $20 per month, that includes a 2 gigabyte data maximum for its Wi-Fi sharing capability.
The launch of Verizon’s first 4G phone puts Verizon in the ring with Sprint, which is the only other major nationwide carrier of the true 4G smartphone definition, which includes the HTC EVO and the Samsung Epic. Both T-Mobile and AT&T appear to have 4G smartphones as well, but technically speaking they run on HSPA+ networks, which aren’t considered 4G. (However, there is an argument in electrical engineering circles as to exactly what 4G is, so really it's up to the consumer to make an educated guess.)
Features of the Verizon 4G Thunderbolt include:
• 4G LTE-expect download speeds of 5-12 Mbps, and upload speeds of 2-5 Mbps in 4G Mobile Broadband coverage areas.
• 4.3” WVGA display
• 8 megapixel rear facing camera and HD (720p) video recording
• 1.3 megapixel front facing camera with video chatting capabilities
• 1GHz Snapdragon processor
• Mobile Hotspot capability
• 8 GB onboard memory and a pre-installed 32 GB micro SD card
• Built-in kickstand for easy media viewing
• Latest version of the HTC Sense operating system.