Review: HTC Thunderbolt
The Thunderbolt runs HTC's Sense user interface on top of Android 2.2.1. Sense offers 7 home screens on which to stuff apps, widgets, and shortcuts. The basic menu architecture of Android itself hasn't changed, and HTC hasn't made too many obvious improvements to the main menus.
Sense remains a capable way to interact with Android phones. The number of customization options, for example, borders on the ridiculous. Nice touches abound that make the whole experience more pleasant, such as the thoughtfully put together "Favorites" widget or the re-touched music application.
As for speed, the Thunderbolt has a single-core 1GHz processor, but it uses a new, second-generation Qualcomm Snapdragon MSM8655 processor. I saw zero speed issues with the user interface. Everything absolutely flew on the Thunderbolt. Applications opened instantly and screen transitions and animations were all smooth.
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The Thunderbolt did, however, exhibit a number of app crashes. The Android Market, in particular, vexed the Thunderbolt to no end. It consistently gave me errors when attempting to download apps, and crashed often. Hopefully this is a minor problem that Verizon can fix quickly with a software update.
Video Tour: HTC Thunderbolt
Phone Scoop shows off HTC's Thunderbolt, the first LTE 4G smartphone to become available from Verizon Wireless. Check out our quick video tour.
Hands-On with Wireless Charging Phones for Verizon
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Hands-On: HTC ThunderBolt
We go hands-on with HTC's new LTE phone for Verizon. Find out what we like, what we don't, how it compares to the other LTE phones, and how it compares to phones like the Inspire 4G.
HTC Thunderbolt Update Squashes Bugs
Verizon Wireless has made a system software update available to the HTC Thunderbolt that resolves a significant number of bugs. According to the changelog published by Verizon, the update improves data connectivity, reduces the number of system crashes/reboots, improves Bluetooth discovery, improves the call history options, offers a tabbed main menu, and enables the people search function.
Update to Help Smooth Out Thunderbolt Data Issues
Verizon Wireless published details about a forthcoming software update for the HTC Thunderbolt. Though many of the improvements are minor, Verizon says that the update will improve the Thunderbolt's data connectivity with its 3G network.