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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on March 20, 2011
Upgraded from the X. This is much better. I bought the extended battery and it runs ALL day long. All the hype about the battery life is just stupid my X was way worse than this phone when compared to both with standard batteries . Haters. 4g on Verizon's network is lightning fast.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on May 27, 2011
So I needed a new phone. I wanted to get a new iPhone but wanted to wait until iPhone5 comes out, and decided to give Android a shot because I haven't yet. Thunderbolt seemed to be the freshest cream of the crop. So I made the switch to Verizon, ordered through Amazon Wireless, and was excited.

The Thunderbolt arrived at my house the next day (Amazing! HUGE kudos for this). Only problem: It was a lemon. The Ear speaker did not work. At all. I was annoyed. Made some friends in customer service and received a replacement phone a couple days later. Super excited: the ear speaker worked! Except the headphone jack did not. Another lemon. I was annoyed.

It was at this point that I began to wonder if a practical joke was being played on me. So now I just got off the phone with customer service AGAIN (love those guys), and am having my THIRD Thunderbolt sent out to me, for arrival in 5 days (!!!).

I am frustrated. But there is nothing I can do. I have purchased the phone, and I have already made the contract switch to Verizon. So I'm just sucking it up, biding my time, and waiting for the iPhone 5 to come out. Hey, at least Apple knows how to build a phone.

P.S. All that said, the phone itself is not bad. I like its speed and awesomely huge screen. The body itself also has a really nice design and feel to it. It is undeniable: the phone is a powerful one in terms of internal performance. However, there are a few big downsides. I really, really, REALLY wish the power/standby button up top were BIGGER. I need to use the tip of my nail just to wake the phone every time. And considering it's the button you use the most.... it boggles my mind that HTC made this button so hard to push. The other major downfall --the much more talked about one-- is the battery life. It sucks. Yup. It does. I get it, all that amazing power for the phone needs to come from somewhere, but needing to charge a phone twice a day with only normal use? Yikes.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on May 12, 2011
First off, I'll address the main point that may or may not make/break your decision to buy a Thunderbolt - the battery life. I have one caveat that is worth mentioning, that may lessen my point somewhat, but I live in Salt Lake and there is no 4G here at the moment. We should be picking up 4G shortly from what I have been told, but my Thunderbolt is being used strictly as a 3G phone. I'll address why I'm still confident in the Thunderbolt below. The battery life has been sufficient for 'all-day' use, and I have yet to run the battery down to 0%. That means taking the phone off the charger about 8AM, using it for brief MP3 duty at work, lots of texting, using Opera to check internet news, Facebook, email, etc, and sometimes the occasional call (funny that phone calls are no longer the main use for my PHONE). Usually I tend to browse the internet or read a magazine on Kindle while relaxing in bed before plugging the phone back in around 11PM or so. I'm usually at about 30% battery life at the end of the day. According to the battery usage tool, the screen is always responsible for most of the battery drain. I keep the brightness on bar 1 or 2 (out of 3) with the included widget, and I am quick to shut off the screen when I'm done using the phone. I've also done the 'battery calibration' trick and spent a few minutes setting up the phone for optimal battery life (google "thunderbolt battery tips" and you'll probably find some good info, it takes just a few minutes).

This MAY or MAY NOT change once we get 4G in my area. Remember, that big, pretty screen is responsible for 70%+ of the battery drain on my phone, not the phone programs or signal.

Now that Verizon has done away with their 1 year contracts (not cool, by the way), this was my last chance to upgrade to a phone on a 1 year contract with the subsidized phone price. The Thunderbolt was the best phone available in April when I upgraded, so that brings me to about 1 month of owning and living with a Thunderbolt. My prior phone was the 'orignal' droid - which was a good phone overall for me. The Droid was getting better (but not drastically so) battery life than the Thunderbolt, with the exact same usage of the phones.

Other noteworthy items:

Gripes about the included programs that cannot be deleted are valid. If I ever root the phone, I will be greatly satisfied when I kill the pointless included apps for this phone.

I was VERY worried about not having a physical keyboard anymore after having one on my last 3 phones. My fears were mostly invalid. I have big hands, and I'm probably 90% as quick using the on-screen keyboard in the Thunderbolt as I was with the physical keyboard on my Droid1.

I like HTC Sense. It's a nifty skin for the Android OS.

The camera is quite useful and takes solid photos. It's not as good as my dedicated digital cam, but the Thunderbolt has mostly replaced it nonetheless.

The Android OS definetely likes a fast processor, and the Thunderbolt delivers here. The OS feels very similar to the iPhone 4 (still not *quite* there, though) in response and the overall quality 'feel' while using the basic functions. My Driod1, overclocked to 800 mhz, did not feel anywhere near this responsive.

I think (and I could be wrong) that, as with most things, the people who take the time to write about stuff on the internet typically are the 'enthusiast' type users of devices. An 'enthusiast' type user will put the phone through more intense usage than someone like me - I'm just a normal dude. This, in my mind, explains a lot of the "6 hour battery life" complaints. Again, I could be wrong, but my experience with this phone is MUCH, MUCH better than I ever expected after reading reviews and forums.

The screen is a major selling point for me. Not only is it easier to read and type on the screen, but movies look better with a larger screen as well. I've taken advantage of the 32 GB card by installing a bunch of movies (using Handbrake on my PC to optimize the movie files for the Thunderbolt - just read up for a few minutes and you'll be set on doing this).

Relating to the storage - I really like having 32GB to play with. I've got my entire MP3 collection on here, plus about a dozen movies, a full season of the simpsons, and I'm still not maxed out.

Verizon seems to have some problems (or reluctance?) with bringing any high-power dual core next-gen phones to it's network, so the Thunderbolt is your best bet at the moment. Even with "only" a single core 1ghz processor, I have no desire to overclock this phone - it's sufficiently powerful for all basic phone functions, movies, music, and gaming, and the only thing left is 3D gaming type stuff, and I've never considered high-end gaming to be very important on a phone anyway.

Final Thoughts:

Remember to run a battery calibration (it makes the phone understand how to charge the battery to its absolute full capacity), optimize some settings for extending the battery life, and shut off your screen as soon as you are finished with the phone, and the battery life will be "all-day" (at least if your experience is at all similar to mine) - and remember replacement batteries are inexpensive, if you decide to buy a extra one to keep handy just in case.

In closing, I recommend the Thunderbolt until Verizon releases a high-end, high-battery-power, dual core device that is well ahead of the Thunderbolt. Thanks for reading!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
I've had this phone for a few months and have been through all the ups and downs with it. Won't belabor a lot of the points made in prior reviews. I like the big screen and features. Is pretty fast when it does use 4G, but still fast with 3G. Call reception is clear and have minimal drops. It does freeze at times and will crash and reboot which can be irritating but I haven't experienced an excessive amount of problems with these issues. There are issues with texting in that it can be less responsive at times and open another text conversation though I selected another and assume it's the phone as I never had this problem with other devices. The major disappointment is the battery life. Even being on standby and sending the occasional text, the battery life is good for about 4 hours, necessitating the need to carry a charging cord with me at all times.

Overall, this could have been a very good to great phone. I can put up with the glitches, but the low battery life makes this a deal breaker and I would recommend looking for an alternative Android phone. It would be nice if HTC/Verizon came out with a new version that deals with the major issues and either replace or give a deep discount to those who bought this version.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on July 18, 2012
I've had this phone since it came out and it is literally the most frustrating electronic device I have ever owned. If I could drop Verizon tomorrow to get another phone for free, I would do so. When it works, which is intermittent, it's quite fast. When it doesn't work (4G now drops every 5 seconds or so), it's worse than useless. The technical geniuses on the web will tell you to do a factory reset, which implies that a user can install software that destabilizes the whole device (or that Thunderbolts will just fail, given enough time). What is this, Windows 95? Or is the problem Android? Or is it Verizon? Who cares, since Verizon won't give you any credit on the device, Google doesn't guarantee their OS will work on it and HTC won't take it back? What a nightmare. Now I'm checking to see if 1) all HTC devices are useless, if 2) all Android devices are useless or 3) I should go back to AT&T (please, no) or change to a pay-as-you-go provider. This type of feeling is why I no longer have a home phone...you'd think telco's would learn. If Apple wasn't the most arrogant company in the world, I'd consider an iPhone again (but I'm thinking about it more and more...). Thanks, Verizon, for giving us a piece of junk with no easy way out.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on June 2, 2011
I researched phones quite a bit before purchasing the HTC Thunderbolt. It is a pretty amazing device that has cut my traditional PC usage by about 90%. I purchased the HTC Thunderbolt even though I was originally concerned because of so many reviews slamming the battery life. I've not experienced the bad battery life that others have reported as I usually can go two days on a charge. That is two days of fairly constant usage. I've only had a couple of days of heavy Internet usage, viewing movies, and playing games where I needed to charge at the end of the day.

My phone area should be getting 4G service soon and I will be ready with my HTC Thunderbolt. 3G is adaquate but still I can't wait to see how 4G performs.

My only complaint with my HTC Thunderbolt is with the location services. I'm not sure if it is the phone or Verizon but my phone frequently has me located in Philadelphia or 30-40 miles away from my real location. This is a bit bothersome and I'll keep working on it to see if I can get it fixed.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on August 16, 2011
This phone is absolutely unusable due to the battery issues. I live and work in NYC, and I'm lucky to get 3 hours out of the phone with light usage (checking sports scores, and Gmail). If I use the phone or Web browser for any length of time, the battery life goes to around 1-2 hours.

I've resorted to carrying a charger in my briefcase, and if I'm not in my office, I'm always looking for a place to plug in and charge. This becomes a hassle when I'm at meetings in remote offices and I'm looking for a plug so the phone can be used.

I've never had a phone die so quickly - I've installed paid applications like "Juice Defender" which has given me maybe another 1/2 hour of charge. I've killed running applications, turned off bluetooth, disabled Wifi, etc.

The phone is just a lemon....and a major inconvenience, as if I'm not able to charge for a few hours, I can count on the battery being completely dead.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on March 4, 2012
I have had this phone for over a month. Verizon doesn't even still have it in the store. This phone overall is underrated. It first came out it was scrutinized for the battery issue. Here is the truth battery is not that great just like many smart phones. However if you have a battery saver like 2x battery, toggle 4g data you will be fine. I have a setting that my data turns off every time I put my screen to sleep. I get through a day easily. Yes I charge my phone every night but I did that with every phone I ever had. I came from a palm to this phone and I really enjoy it. It doesn't lag and I think the kick stand is the sweet. I don't understand why the got rid of that idea it is awesome. O yea it is getting ice crea sandwich as well. This phone will be fine for me for two years. I will order cheap batteries from amazon if I have too.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on September 14, 2011
I waited eagerly for my contract for my BB to be up so I could upgrade to an I Phone. The sales people at Verizon convinced me to wait for the new and wonderful 4G ThunderBolt which I did. They convinced me that the ThunderBolt was a far more advanced and streamlined choice since it was 4G, had all these wonderful features. I bought the phone with the extra battery attached and then had only two weeks to try and figure it out before returning it (if I didn't like it). Too fast a turnaround. Two major problems with the phone: 1) Calling out using a bluetooth earpiece is a frustrating game, even with the most noise-filtering bluetooth and 2) Syncing with my MacBookPro is impossible! I am hoping that the IPhone5 (or whatever model comes out at the end of my two year contract with the ThunderBolt) will be a better fit for my needs.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on April 24, 2011
I am in a strange situation in that I owned the Thunderbolt for about 10 days but I returned it because of the poor battery life. I have to say that I regret returning the phone and I could have learned to live with the sub par battery life because the phone was very fast, responsive and 4G was awesome on the Verizon network. I do not see anything that can replace the phone in the present Verizon line up. I was holding out for the Bionic but it seems that it will not be released till the Fall according to chatter on the blogosphere. I am contemplating getting the iPhone 4 but after experiencing the Android platform it is hard to go to a closed system. I may just go ahead and get the phone again. If you are on the fence about an Android phone and can live with a short battery life then go ahead and get the phone.
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