Today’s Forecast: Thunderstorm Followed By Scattered Showers
Tuesday, March 22, 2011 11 Comments
Let’s face it, many of us don’t use our phones as phones anymore. They’re small, portable computers; hubs to stay connected with friends and occasionally call mom. Yeah, phones still make calls. I know, it’s astounding.
In November 2009, Android made a huge splash with the introduction of the Motorola Droid on Verizon. Fast forward to March 2011…you don’t need a history lesson. The next evolution of Android phones is beginning: 4G connectivity, dual-core processors, front-facing cameras, etc. If you are the average phone user or just barely getting into smartphones, you could honestly care less about these. Luckily, Verizon is keeping their 4G plans the same price as 3G (for now). Right now, you have one solid option on Verizon: the HTC Thunderbolt.
At first glance, the Thunderbolt looks like Sprint’s Evo in a different color pattern. You know what? Realistically, it is. With a 4.3” screen, which looks absolutely gorgeous, and a 1GHz single-core processor, it’s virtually the same phone. It’s similar in almost every way. HTC’s Sense doesn’t differ much between devices. This phone is fast enough for 90% of everything you throw at it. It goes on the internet, it makes calls, and it has a hell of a camera (8 MP with a 1.3 MP front-facing camera) which will someday be used with Skype and several programs now.
I’m not going to lie, that huge kickstand is as sturdy as a rhino and turns the phone into an awesome little alarm clock, which my Droid has become. And that speaker sounds great! Speaker quality is important because I use my Droid at work (I work on semis) as a radio sometimes. The Thunderbolt is louder and clearer somehow. Hardcore gaming? The Thunderbolt won’t blow you away, but if you’re really looking for a good portable gaming device, get a PSP (wait for the new one, which is AWESOME) or wait for the Xperia Play.
We’re not a tech blog. We’re a bunch of dudes in our mid-twenties talking about things we enjoy. I happen to enjoy tech stuff a lot. I’m here to tell you that if you need a new phone and want the latest and greatest, then go for it. It’ll set you back about $250 plus tax on the full price for a 2 year contract. Most of us don’t have that kind of cash to throw around and, luckily, there are several ways to get it for cheaper.
I don’t care for rooting my phone. My original Droid works just fine how it is, especially with the new Windows Mobile 7 skin I put on it (Launcher 7). I don’t care for 4G. I’m patient and I can wait for my page to load. Besides, there are three cities in the Bay Area with 4G capabilities: San Francisco, Oakland, and San Jose. The rest of us won’t get it until some obscure date in the future. Down the road, when Verizon raises their prices without adding the actual service towers, you’re going to be paying for a service you don’t have if you live outside these cities. FAIL.
So, if you’re in the market for a new phone and really don’t mind Verizon, who is slowly raising prices and really sticking it to their customers, then get this phone. It’s a great phone/small computer. I get a lot work done with my Droid, but would definitely appreciate a slightly faster, slightly larger device. Or if you really want the fastest, newest, shiniest piece of technology then just wait a few months because there are all kinds of great Android devices coming out, including HTC’s own EVO 3D on Sprint and Pyramid on T-Mobile, not to mention the very probable next Nexus device in the winter and several mid-level devices offered every month. If you’re really cheap, go on Craigslist. Here in the Bay Area, there are dozens of good Android devices listed for relatively cheap.
I like shiny things, and this phone is great. However, it’s expensive and it’s pretty much last year’s technology. I was stoked about this phone when it leaked sometime last summer. It looked phenomenal and was supposed to be released in November. They took too long to release it and now there’s better devices waiting in the wings. Save yourself some money and either wait or get something else.
You can check out more details here.