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on January 8, 2015
i have had several.smartphones however i have never had so many problems with this.phone the processor is so incredibly so it takes.forever.to.switch between apps and.home.screen ot.constantly freezes im on limited income.so.i.thought i.was.getting a.deal.but it os.horrible
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on September 22, 2013
My daughter broke her "contracted" phone so I looked over the options online and was able to find a suitable and even possible upgrade to her Lucid.
Price was great, much better than that of Verizon's refurbished options. The Thunderbolt came earlier than expected through the mail that I paid std shipping for, was packaged well, and also had a note from the seller jic there was a problem.
The phone was as close to as new shape as could be expected, extremely happy that the screen was perfect!
Daughter has used it (a lot) and reports that she is very happy with the phone! This exchange made the hunt for a quick replacement phone extremely easy and I am very Thankful! Awesome :)
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on May 10, 2011
Decided to repost my review with some edits after spending more time with this phone.

One thing I want to say up front is that this phone has replaced my Garmin GPS and my iPod. The "Navigator" program is free and fantastic for turn-by-turn vocal directions and the 32 GB of storage holds my music library with room to spare. The 4G connection also makes the internet extremely friendly to use.

Battery life, though, is really really bad. Bad like whoa. It's the display. It's a great display, but wow. Every time I check, the display is the #1 power consumer by a huge margin. On my friends' Droid phones, the display doesn't stand out nearly as much on the list of battery eaters. Consequently, they can use their Droids for a day and a half and have half a battery. I use mine for literally 2 hours and have half a battery. In fact, it consumes so much power that if I leave the screen on while it's charging, it won't actually gain any ground.

So my short advice is that if you get this phone, get power adapters. I am keeping the phone, but it's plugged in almost all the time. Luckily, the mini-USB cable it uses is common enough that I have several wall adapters from other devices that work for it, and I have a car adapter for it as well.

So anyway, this is my first smart phone. I avoided getting a smart phone for a long time. I went from "meh" to completely hooked in one day with this phone.

I confess that I initially bought it to try my hand at developing smart phone apps. Apple's draconian methods and strict "Apple only" restrictions are going to make everyone suffer in the long run, just as the Apple/Mac brand desktop computer has suffered relative to Windows machines in terms of popularity, available applications and available hardware -- Apple is not a very friendly company and Does Not Play Well (or at all) With Others. They have their reasons, and maybe they aren't bad ones, but they're why I still use Windows and now, a Droid.

4G:
Check the charts for availability. It's sketchy where I am on the far outskirts of D.C. but the closer you go to a major city or major interstate corridor the more likely you are to get it. I get 4G at the office and I use my regular internet wifi at home. Don't have a wireless network at your house? Not a problem -- plug the Thunderbolt into the USB port of your computer and it will share your computer's internet connection. Anyway, if you do get 4G you'll note it's blazingly fast compared to the 3G phones, which makes the internet a lot more practical. Web pages load up just as fast as they do on my home computer.

(If you don't have 4G, the phone will use whatever is available but then, if you NEVER have 4G, you could just get a cheaper Droid... That said, I'm sure we'll see rapid expansion of 4G availability. It's gonna be huge. How can it not? It's kind of awesome.)

Phone features:
Awesome. Kickstand on the back of the phone lets it stand up on the bottom or side. There's a forward camera (for video conferencing or taking a picture of yourself) and a rear camera (for regular pictures/videos). There are 2 bright LEDs for taking pictures or just as a flashlight. Built in GPS, wifi and bluetooth. It can act as a "wifi hot spot", allowing you to get online with other devices. Standard earphone plugs. Mini-USB connection.

No slide-out keyboard. Can't say I'm bothered by this, but just so you know. The keyboard appears on the screen when you need to type and you get a vibration feedback when you push a button, so it seems fine (note: for a larger keyboard, hold the phone sideways). I was terrible with it at first but have greatly improved my typing speed after a couple weeks with it.

It does come pre-loaded with applications but I don't see the problem here. It will annoy power users but most people will either not notice or actually appreciate that the basic things they want to do (like music, GPS navigation, messaging, email, internet, etc) are pre-loaded and ready to go.

Bottom line, I'm really enjoying the phone. It's a true hand-held computer and it's really handy to have access to so many things, all integrated nicely into the phone. Facebook, YouTube, all the websites I often see other phones having problems with, etc. It's hard to find serious fault here other than the battery. This thing is a beast. It's powerful, and the battery is not nearly up to dealing with it.
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on June 26, 2011
This is a review of the Thunderbolt as a device not the network.

Pros:

-The larger screen makes a HUGE difference, specially when it comes to typing.
-The battery life is about one day of regular use.

Cons:
-Other than 4G and the larger screen, this phone is surprisingly one the most mediocre models to ever come out from the HTC factory.
-The back speaker (speakerphone) is tiny sounding, prone to distortion and mediocre, I am amazed that no one has mentioned this problem on their reviews online. I was so taken aback by the awful audio that I went to Verizon Wireless in person and tried three different Thunderbolts, they ALL exhibited the same mediocre audio reproduction. This would not be such a big deal if they weren't marketing the phone as a "media consumption" device (with a kick stand and all) It does not help that the current version of Android does not offer a way to Equalize the sound, like an audio manager. Only when you are using the "Music" app you can turn on a hidden menu that would improve the playback of your mp3 songs via speaker.
The equalizer does not work on any other source of audio including YouTube or phone calls.

If you open the kick stand on the back you can see the cheap speaker hiding behind a metallic grid, this grid is probably the source of the distortion. Opening the kick stand increases the metallic distortion quite noticeably.

If you already have the HTC Incredible a new Thunderbolt is going to feel like a downgrade, just wait until HTC makes a better phone (Bionic?). Ironically, the speakers on the competing 4G phones are similarly mediocre.
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on August 28, 2014
This phone has horrible battery life. I would choose a Droid X over this phone if you're looking at a cheap phone. The only thing I liked about it was the kickstand. I bought an battery extension pack for it and I wouldn't even use it anymore because it was unsightly and embarrassing to pull out of my pocket. It was a great incentive for me to purchase a new phone.
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on August 10, 2014
At first the phone works great, but sometimes the screen would freeze and you had to remove the battery to reboot. This was a bit frustrating. After owning this phone now t for almost year I would not recommend it. The battery life is less than 1 1/2 hr after being fully recharged. I took it to Verizon store because I thought it was my data plan however they told me the battery needed replacing. The second thing I noticed (I am not sure if it's related to the battery) but there is a significant slowing and sometimes delays in sending phone calls and retrieving data.
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on January 7, 2014
I like the phone it is great for common use and texting. my major discourage of this model is how much it lags. when i first got it i had to manually go threw and shut everything down to make it faster. Still even after i did that and added a cleaning to the phone it is still a major lag fest.

the phone has great battery life. I am a normal 20 year old and this phone can last; as long as you are not listening to music and keep it clean. the longest i have had the phone last was 2 days with out being on the charger (with no extended battery). and lasts for about 12 hours if used like a normal teen would, as long as kept clean. otherwise the battery will last for about 8 hrs and 5 if listening to music from the time you turn it on until completely dead.

i give this phone a 3/5 because it is a great phone but needs a lot of attention to keep it running well. I would rate this phone much higher if there was little to no lag. Since i ordered it brand new i see no reason for this. I could see this if i ordered it new but due to it being new it got a lower rating...
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on April 2, 2011
I upgraded to the HTC Thunderbolt after using Blackberry products (most recently the BB Storm 2) for years. The HTC products are amazing.

Processor Speed. This has to be the fastest smartphone on the market. Opening applications, working through applications, scrolling emails/Tweets...etc, all are a flash. This is the first phone I've owned where I've had to "slow down" the scrolling speed to see what's passing on the screen.

Large Screen. Amazing viewing for mobile web, pictures, and video. However, some people have been surprised with the effect this has on battery life. As with a laptop, the more you task the video and the brighter you want it, the shorter your battery life. You'll need a portable charger and/or the extended battery which is now being introduced. Manage your applications, screen brightness, and battery capacity with this phone!

Android Apps. I found that my Blackberry Storm (stalled at BB OS 5.0) had limited application functionality. I was pleasantly surprised to find upgraded features in Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare, etc with the newer/faster phone. (I didn't know what I was missing).

32GB External Hard Drive. Yes...plug this into your computer and "mount" the device and you now have a very useful portable flash drive. The HTC comes with the 32GB microUSB card installed.

Size. The device is noticably larger than my BB Storm (due to the larger screen). As a huge plus, the phone fits perfectly in my hand during phone calls (i.e., not too big, not too small...as some phones are becoming). However, if you want to wear the HTC Thunderbolt on your belt...prepare for "Geek Style". (It's big). Get screen protectors and a rubber "skin" if you want to carry in your coat pocket, etc. Otherwise, be prepared to deal with how to carry this small computer.

Office/Acrobat. I installed many PDF and Word files on the device. This is the first device where I'll actually use this function (i.e., good viewability on the screen). Given the 32GB of storage, you can take files to read/review and the installed applications open them very quickly. Scrolling and "pinch" to zoom/unzoom is a breeze.

Battery Capacity. Again, the biggest user complaint/concern. Manage it. Turn off WiFi when not in use, don't run GPS-intensive apps unless you need them (or you have a car charger), remove unwanted/unneeded apps. Be prepared to plug the device into a charger (i.e., home/work/car) if you're using a lot of GPS, Video, or Application power. You can't ask for an "SUV of Technology" without expecting to use more energy. Easy to deal with, in my opinion and worth the tradeoff from my outdated Blackberry Storm.

Enjoy!
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on May 10, 2012
Adult owned.

Great features.
Very fast.
4G is a plus.
Battery is 6/10. As long as you turn off things you're not using it'll last a while
Camera is great, front camera takes good quality pictures too.
Video recording is fast with no lag or blur.
Screen resolution is great, very nice to watch videos on.
Call quality is pretty good, same with the mic.
For some reason the stand is painted a dark grey over the natural metal color, the paint slowly peels off but it just becomes a lighter shade of grey.
Durability is good, will not dent like the iphone and is not as sensitive to moisture. I would still recommend a case.

Inconvenient not having a home button like the Iphone but not a huge issue.
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on April 1, 2011
My blackberry died and it was time to upgrade. I wanted something Android and fast, and this phone looked promising. I wait a week with no phone, just because I wanted the Thunderbolt over another phone.

But, my Thunderbolt battery lasts 4.5 hours, with little use, even with brightness set to 19%, timeout to 15 seconds and all the cool friend streaming features turned off. The phone says it has 40gb of memory, but so much stuff comes pre-installed, non-deletable, that you have much less to use. Some of the apps (Blockbuster) constantly scan your location, really draining the battery. And you can't delete that. You can, however, "download and update it" so you can turn that feature off. Yes, you can root the phone, and delete it, but that voids the warranty and the battery will still be woefully underpowered.

My mobile phone isn't so mobile when I need to carry a charger around. I would hopefully wait for an upgrade, but according to the blogs, that doesn't seem like an immediate priority. That, coupled with the fact that this phone was originally delayed because of battery issues, implies there are deep-rooted issues and it doesn't seem like there will be a fix anytime soon.

Any of the awesome features this phone has are overshadowed by fundamental problems. It's fast, it can internet and phone at the same time, it has a lot of memory - none of it matters when the phone can't act like a phone more than 4 hours at a time.
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