5 Reasons Not To Buy A 4G LTE Smartphone Today

Hardly a day goes by when I’m not tempted to buy a ticket and hop aboard the 4G LTE smartphone train. A few of my friends have LTE devices and love the upload and download speeds that they’ve been getting. They tell me to get one when my iPhone 3GS contract runs out. The Verizon store reps in my neighborhood rave to me about the Droid Charge and the HTC ThunderBolt. My co-workers have bought into 4G LTE.

4G LTE

However, I’m not ready to hop aboard the train just yet and here are some reasons why.

Lack Of Hardware

First and foremost, there isn’t a wide selection when it comes to 4G LTE smartphones. In fact, you can count all of them on one hand. We’ve got the HTC ThunderBolt, the Droid Charge and the LG Revolution. Essentially, I can choose between three phones that I wouldn’t consider without LTE. No dual-core and really nothing that stands out except the Droid Charge’s Super AMOLED Plus Display. They are all single-core phones. They all boast a 4.3 inch screen. There is nothing that truly separates them besides the Droid Charge’s display, the different UI’s over Android and their form factors.

Samsung Droid Charge

Until there is more hardware diversity, I’m taking a pass.

Early Adoption Issues

Early adoption does not appeal to me at all and I’m pretty sure that there are more than a few people out there that bought the HTC ThunderBolt or Droid Charge without knowing what they would have to deal with. Plain and simple, it doesn’t look like fun. HTC ThunderBolt owners are seeing random reboots. Most 4G LTE smartphone owners suffer from unstable battery life. The entire 4G LTE network has gone down and it wouldn’t be shocking to see it go down again.

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HTC ThunderBolt

All in all,  it’s probably worth waiting for a more mature network and more stable devices to arrive. Verizon itself has even said that there are trade-offs when it comes to buying in this early to 4G LTE and I’m not willing to pay to be a test subject.

Verizon Is The Only Major U.S. Carrier Offering 4G LTE

Besides the limited hardware options, there is also a lack of options when it comes to the 4G LTE service itself. Currently, Verizon is the only major carrier that offers it in the United States with AT&T confirmed to be rolling out their network in five cities this summer.

But what about MetroPCS and U.S. Cellular you might ask? MetroPCS currently offers 4G LTE but they also only have two (as a reader pointed out) phones available for it, the Samsung Craft, which is definitely not something you want to sign up for and the Samsung Galaxy Indulge which isn’t even on par with the first-gen Galaxy S devices. That’s not the only thing that will keep you away from MetroPCS’ network either.

U.S. Cellular is green lighting its 4G LTE network this holiday season but like MetroPCS, it’s not available nationwide, and it’s unclear if either of them ever will be.

As for the other two major U.S. carriers, Sprint currently uses 4G WiMax which is slower than 4G LTE. There have been rumors that it is considering a move to 4G LTE but things have been relatively quiet lately. And as for T-Mobile, it employs a HSPA+ network which is slower than both WiMax and LTE, not that it stops T-Mobile from calling their network 4G.

So ultimately, this comes down to options and I’m not sure I’m willing to just throw my money at Verizon or MetroPCS without any other major carrier options on the table. And unfortunately, it’s going to be awhile before any viable options are.

4G LTE Service Isn’t Everywhere

Yes, there is 4G LTE service here in the Bay Area but what if I decide to go visit my brother in Eugene, Oregon? I’m not going to have 4G LTE service. And even then I’m lucky. Many people live in places that don’t yet have 4G LTE service and may not even see it until 2013 as that’s when Verizon plans to have the entire network rolled out.

Verizon LTE

If you’re willing to roll the dice and bet that you’re going to get 4G LTE before then,  you’ll at least want to wait for next-generation hardware to come out and that way you’ll have one thing going for you in case your bet turns out to be a bad one.

Maybe I Don’t Want Android/Few Optimized Applications

The three 4G LTE options on the market right now are all Android smartphones. As much as I like Android, I also like what I am seeing from iOS 5 and Windows Phone 7.1 Mango is looking amazing as well. It’s unlikely that we’ll see a 4G LTE iPhone this year so that means it’s likely going to be 2012 before iOS gets in on the fun and it’s unclear when Windows Phone 7 will get its first LTE device. And while it’s easy just to make the move to Android because it’s a fabulous operating system, I want the same choices  with software that I want with hardware.

A smaller point that I should also point out is the lack of applications on the Android market that take advantage of 4G LTE speeds. Netflix on the LG Revolution is one but there really isn’t anything else out there that catches my eye. Ok, so you can browse the web at blazing speeds (a dual-core processor would help) but you can’t really do much else with it. And I’m talking about average stuff here, not everyone gets a phone to perform speed tests or to tether.

  

Comments

    • Adam Mills says

      Thanks Joe. Post has been updated to reflect it. The fact that I forgot about it should tell you a lot about it’s relevance in the 4G LTE market.

      • CharlesM says

        You were also wrong about MetroPCS only having one LTE phone — the Samsung Craft.  They also have the LTE Android Samsung Galaxy Indulge.  It was the FIRST LTE Android in the world, PERIOD.  They beat Verizon and the entire world to market with it in Feb 2011.  Please correct your errors.

      • CharlesM says

        You should also change this sentence: “Currently, Verizon is the only carrier that offers it in the United States ”

        That’s just not true.  You said you changed it to reflect MetroPCS’ network but you left that sentence in.  This whole article seems to be sloppy and not well researched.  It needs a major re-write.

      • CharlesM says

        You should also change this sentence: “Currently, Verizon is the only carrier that offers it in the United States ”

        That’s just not true.  You said you changed it to reflect MetroPCS’ network but you left that sentence in.  This whole article seems to be sloppy and not well researched.  It needs a major re-write.

        • Anonymous says

          It may have been changed since you last looked, but the article says “Verizon is the only major US carrier with LTE.” MetroPCS was first, but they are a relatively minor carrier, and from what I’ve read, their LTE network isn’t very good (it’s said to be about as fast as T-Mobile’s network).

      • Ciper says

        AT&T also has an LTE network currently in place, and this is the reason they will try to purchase TMobile. They are testing it internally now and will flip the switch for users in the next few months. I know the average joe may not follow the wireless industry closely but those users look to you as their source of information. See this link for example http://www.wireless.att.com/learn/why/technology/4g-lte.jsp

  1. Petrik says

    absolutely agree with you Adam on eveything you said in this article. I have Motorola Atrix and hspa+ speed really sucks here in new york. very spotty service. but I’m OK with it since most of the time I’m on wifi (have 2gb plan trying to conserve data) so it’ll take another year before new hardware and optimized software will work with LTE speeds without needing to recharge the phone every 4 hours….

  2. BrianB13 says

    You make some valid points here Adam.  However, for those of us who are outside of our contract, we have to make a decision to get another phone now or wait for something else to come out down the road.  I’m looking at getting the Bionic or the Galaxy SII.  It will depend upon reviews of these phones.  If they are decent, I will get one of them, otherwise I will get a phone that just works well and see what happens in 2 years.       

  3. Anonymous says

    I am one of the early adopters and bought the HTC Thunderbolt when it was released.  I also had an Android device previous to the Thunderbolt.  I have had none of the random reboots that have plagued some users.  My battery life is not bad when you consider the majority of Android phones are not the best at battery management.  I think your article is a bit biased, but I understand your point.  You are generalizing the 4G LTE experience as terrible for all users when that is not the case.  I live in a 4G LTE city which was one of the first to go live with the network.  So what if my Uncle Ned in Oregon doesn’t have LTE when I visit him.  I want it in the place where I spend ninety percent of my time which is my home city.

  4. Andy Anderson says

    Just a little confused seeing that you posted this article today, and not a few weeks ago. You have totally missed the Droid Bionic option, which does have a dual-core processor, and still boasts a gorgeous screen with a possible 48mb of storage. Was this an intentional omition, or accidental. I am currently hunting for my iPhone/AT&T replacement, so I am interested in your opinions. Thanks.

    • Andy Anderson says

      I apologize, I now see that the Bionic is not in mass release yet, and is probably why it was not an option here. Thanks for the analysis, it’s good to hear others thoughts.

    • Adam Mills says

      Andy. Very aware of the Droid Bionic. This article deals with the present and presently, the Droid Bionic has no release date other than “summer.” I do see your point though. However, even when the Droid Bionic comes out, there will be a grand total of four devices available on 4G LTE. All Android, which means I am still handcuffed.

      I should also mention that the Droid Bionic will be coming with a locked bootloader and with Motorola deferring to carriers on whether to unlock it, it will likely never get unlocked. I’d much rather wait for an HTC-made dual-core handset that allows for optimal customization.

      • Andy Anderson says

        I absolutely agree. I prefer a HTC as well. Although I have had my iPhone for 2 years, so I am itching for an Android. I just think it’s better all around. Although, I HAVE been plagued with some of the worst of iPhone’s issues. So, I may be biased in that manner. Thanx for response!!

      • Ciper says

        Having dual cores does not automatically make the phone twice as fast. Off the top of my head compare the performance of the Infuse to the Atrix and you will see the top end dual core has similar performance to the top end single core because of different architectures.

        I almost feel for the hype as well and was very close to getting an Atrix until I read the trustworthy reviews and tried both phones for myself. (I realize neither of these are LTE or 4G but in this case I was only comparing cpu types)

    • CharlesM says

      He’s still wrong about Metro only having one LTE phone.  They have the Samsung Galaxy Indulge, the first LTE Android in the world.  They beat Verizon to market and he totally left that one out.

  5. Sblitchfieldsc says

     Dont get me wrong, I obsessively love new phones lately, and I cant wait to get a new one with a dual core processor when Verizon may ever release on . But the phones do so much as it is right now compared to our nokias in 2001 that we thought playing snake was a big deal.  But are you doing that much more on the phone right now that a dualcore is needed. The single cores right now are still fast, and Verizons LTE and 3g are still the top service in most areas out there right now.  Yea it would be nice to have G2X type phone, or a Sensation on verizons service. But I wouldn’t want the slow speeds, dead spots, an dropped calls of AT&T’s or T-mobiles service, ya know?  whats a great fast phone, with not so great, slow service..  I guess its ultimately up to each individuals wants and desires. 

  6. Tim says

    These Android LTE phones are the cutting edge, geek phones to have right now. If you want to look pretty with a Digitally-Clueless Beauty Queen phone, get an iPhone. If you want a kick-butt phone, you have choices with these Android LTE’s

  7. Anonymous says

    What verizon is not telling people who purchase these OUTDATED OVERPRICED SPECED device is that LTE burns the life out of these device. They have the nerve to want 250.00 or 300.00 for SINGLECORE DEVICES verizon is RIPPING there customers off with a delusion of the speed of the network with three measily phones on it but forgetting to MENTION THAT BATTERY LIFE ON LTE IS 3HRS TOPS.

    • Msmith says

      I have a thunderbolt and use it frequently throughout the day. Texting, foursquare, internet, calls, facebook, etc. I am constantly in a 4G area. I unplug my phone at 7am and go to bed at around 11pm with about a 40% charge left. What do you expect from a phone that is basically a computer in your pocket. If you want a phone that will go three days to a week on a charge, then get a flip phone. Also, my phone has never had the plagued reboot issues. Battery on this phone is not as bad as everyone claims, I think people expect way too much out of these phones that are small pocket computers.

  8. Anonymous says

    I agree with this article 100%.  AT&T have had a phone like the Atrix for 6 months.  Verizon is in the slow lane.   ticking me off a tad.  Droid 1 goes on and on….

  9. Hondanerd says

    Im assuming Droid bionic is the best option we gave so far, but what really stinks is that Verizon is ending unlimited data plans!! So now why would I buy a blazing fast phone, and then be afraid of going over with my data plan and pay more money!!!

  10. CharlesM says

    You are mistaken.  MetroPCS also offers the Samsung Galaxy Indulge LTE Android.  They not only had the first LTE network, beating Verizon, they had the first LTE phone, beating Verizon, and they had the first LTE Android, beating Verizon.

    • Moron999 says

      CharlesM, could you please get yourself a life.  You made your point 3 posts ago.  It is not so much what you have to say as much as how you say it.  You sound so winey.  I can hear your tone of voice very clearly.  It is annoying.  We get it.  You are a MetroPCS customer who has made his choice or possibly it is because you work for them.  Heck, maybe you’re even a stockholder.  You are personally insulted by the obviously shoddy work done by Adam.  GET OVER IT!  and  GET OVER YOURSELF!!
      Adam is right.  Although he does not say this exactly, the bottom line is, MetroPCS doesn’t need to be included in this conversation because they are a MINISCULE player in comparison to Verizon and to a lesser degree, the fake 4G also rans, T-Pinky and Mellow WIMAX Yellow.  I assume that his desire was to write this article as informational to the vast majority of his readers.  You may very well be the only MetroPCS customer that has actually read this article.  I will admit that I love their commercials…but I also love those new Dairy Queen commercials.  I haven’t been to a Dairy Queen since 1987.  I have no plans to go in the foreseeable future.
      I am recently out of contract and itching for a 4G Smartphone.  As the author suggests, I will be waiting a while longer.  In the meantime I am going to learn to play electric guitar with my teeth!

      • Adam Mills says

        As I’ve told Charles, MetroPCS is an option but it’s not one that I would recommend to anyone. The phones are atrocious and it’s just never going to be on the magnitude that Verizon’s network is. Is it relevant? Yes, for some people. But only for those that absolutely refuse to deal with contracts, enjoy using last-gen phones and aren’t worried about having a nice, 4G LTE blanket for their phone.

        I am glad that it’s in the conversation now though. People should at least know of its existence.

        • Ciper says

          Last-gen? The Metro Galaxy Indulge is using the same cpu/gpu as all of the current Galaxy phones. The only “last gen” part is the lower cost screen which was a necessity since they are not subsidized through a contract. Tell me which benchmark application you’d like me to use and will post the results as a screen shot to show you it is not a last generation phone.

          Perhaps you are not aware that MetroPCS is the fifth largest phone company in the country. They are not an MVNO and have agreements with multiple carriers including (including Sprint) so you have still have coverage in areas where they haven’t built towers without any roaming charges.

        • Guest says

          Who on earth would ever buy a Samsung Galaxy device on a network like MetroPCS? Seriously, you’d have to count them on one hand I’d imagine.

      • CharlesM says

        I made my points because the whole article was so full of sloppy research.  I contacted the author and he re-wrote parts of it — but before then it was totally inaccurate and still is to some degree. He was cordial in our correspondence, but I also sent him the entire article marked up with like 10 glaring errors, most of which he corrected.  

        He initially said there were only 3 LTE phones available in the USA. There are FIVE LTE phones available, two of them from Metro.  Metro is available in some of the largest cities like LA, NY, Miami, Dallas, Atlanta.  The author said he didn’t even consider Metro because it’s not available in his city — but initially he mentioned U.S. Cellular’s upcoming LTE network. US Cellular is far SMALLER than Metro and available in even less markets.  So, I had to correct some ignorance of facts.

        His overall points are still valid, first gen LTE phones are problematic due to hardware issues and coverage.  I get that.  But when you leave out the THE FIRST TWO LTE phones in the USA, one of them being an Android Galaxy model, you show you don’t really have a full grasp of the current cellular market.  This article is about LTE phones and you don’t even know the five LTE phones out there right now?   Or even mention the first LTE network in the USA?  NY, LA, Miami, etc is nothing to sneeze at.  

        The author has since re-written parts of the article but still is inaccurrate in a few places. THAT was my point, which I made a few times because truth in journalism is important.  Sorry if you like ignorance or lies instead.  

        No, I don’t work for Metro but have researched this issue thoroughly over the past year.

        • Guest says

          First of all, get a life. Second, the point here is that MetroPCS is completely irrelevant to the average person and that is who this article was written for. The average person is absolutely not going to go to MetroPCS for LTE. They are going to go to Verizon or AT&T when it arrives. MetroPCS is mentioned here and that was actually pretty nice of the author to do considering the overall arch of the article.

          Yes, the Craft was out first. No, it’s not a smartphone that anyone in their right mind would buy. It’s $299 (or at least was) for christsakes.

        • Paulgm1 says

          really? yyou really think metropcs 4G lte service deserves to be mentioned in the same breath as verizon’s? are you out of your mind? answer me this. why would i ever want to go to a blatantly inferior network with a grand total of 2 phones available, both of which are steaming piles of shit.

          yes, metropcs has a lte network. yes, they had the first lte phone. but people dont give a shit. at least smart people dont. comparing the craft or the indulge to the thunderbolt or droid charge is laughable. i don’t care if the network is in big cities. why on earth would i ever use it with the hardware thats available? no big name phones will EVER debut on metropcs.

          without any capable hardware, the network isnt relevant. get a clue.

        • Paulgm1 says

          and might i add. this article isn’t a goddamn history lesson on 4g lte. it brings up some points, which you apparently agree with, for people to use when thinking about buying a 4g lte phone. thats it, thats all.

    • ThomasP says

      Metro Sucks, so stop going on and on about it!  Who cares what phones Metro has…they don’t have the network that Verizon has, PERIOD!

  11. CharlesM says

    You are mistaken.  MetroPCS also offers the Samsung Galaxy Indulge LTE Android.  They not only had the first LTE network, beating Verizon, they had the first LTE phone, beating Verizon, and they had the first LTE Android, beating Verizon.

  12. Xxlarge420 says

    Ive been using Sprints 4G. My HTC Evo 4G, HTC Shift 4G,& a Samsung Epic 4G. As of now Sprints 4G coverage in my city is,by far,the best. The Verizon HTC Thunderbolt 4G LTE device i tested/used for 2 weeks could rarely find a strong enuf 4G signal,& Verizon is claiming full 4G coverage in city limits,but their 4G LTE will barely even get a strong enuf signal to work & i live in the middle of my city,but my Sprint Evo 4G gets a great 4G signal & is faster on 4G than it is on my wifi network. Mayb its just my city,but Verizon shouldnt claim full 4G LTE coverage when it will only connect about half the time,&then half the time it does connect the signal strength is so weak it switches back to 3G. Its just not as strong,or as reliable as Sprints 4G in my city. Also Verizons 4G hasnt been any faster than Sprints 4G in my city,yet. Also Sprint has some of the nicest/best 4G devices available,dual core processors,3D screens,& some of the fastest update rollouts of any carrier. My OG HTC Evo 4G is well over a year old & its still getting updated. Sprint tends to stick with their good devices for longer than most carriers. Looking over the Evo 4G specs it looks to hav been ahead of its time. Bcuz now almost every major carrier now has a 1Ghz,android powered os,4.3″ screen,8mp rear camera,1.3mp front camera,etc,etc…….Sounds like Verizons HTC Thunderbolt,AT&Ts Inspire?,i think thats the name,& etc,etc,….Most the new,popular,devices hav specs similiar to the original Evo 4G specs,some with more memory,slightly higher res display,& the occasional dual-core processor,but most look like revamped Evo’s on different networks.As far as MetroPCS,we dont hsv MetroPCS. My city has Cricket,which ive used,but they arent claiming any 4G service of any kind yet. I thought that MetroPCS & Cricket Mobile were sister companies,but i really dont know. So i cant comment on Metros 4G LTE service. Cricket is one of our only;no credit check,no contract,pay as u go,mobile networks that is in my city. I used them bcuz they had fully unlimited plan for $60,but the data was capped at 2GB a month,now its only 1GB a month. The biggest appeal bout Cricket service is that they will activate other carriers esn #s,making it able to use virtually any CDMA device on Crickets network.I used an HTC Incredible on Crickets network & it worked fine,everythin,full flash.Sorry for strayin off topic.

  13. Anonymous says

    Please do some research before posting an article like this.  http://www.metropcs.com/shop/PhoneDetails.aspx?ProductId=SCHR910ZKAM(Phones)
    Takes no more than a few mins to check.  

  14. Ahernandez4110 says

    Sorry Adam metroPCS is the first to Turn On the Switch for LTE and The first to Test Samsung Craft, and The First to Have a Android Galaxy LTE Device… 

  15. Doug says

    i could be wrong and all, but i think metropcs was the first to switch on an lte network for consumer use.  they were the first to launch and lte phone as well as the first lte android as well.  i mean their speed/bandwidth may not match verizon or anything, but hey, they made history in my book :)

  16. CharlesM says

    The funny part is he could mention MetroPCS and their LTE phones and STILL make his points.  His points are even more valid with MetroPCS in the mix.  Their Craft was Crap and the Indulge has had battery problems and Metro is striving mightily to supplement their LTE coverage.  It’s just when his supporting statements are full of errors it makes his conclusions look weak for people who really know the U.S. cell phone industry. 

    LTE is the future and knowing the current state of LTE is important.

    • Guest says

      The MetroPCS 4g LTE network is slower than HPSA networks which are slower than Verizon 4g. They don’t even have a 3g network, you are stuck with either 2g or their inferior slow 4g. Congratulations on your history lesson and your inferior network. MetroPCS has been very clear that they’re 4g LTE network isn’t even meant for fast data speeds like the other carriers, it is to handle their voice calls. They hope this is cheaper than their CDMA network. For someone who thinks they know it all you seem to be terribly uninformed.

  17. Jeffgalee27 says

    Ur a troll. Have you ever bothered to take up another hobby? You’re a natural..natural disaster.

  18. Ross Binkley says

    The most valid point in this article is that there are only 3 LTE phones available from Verizon (yes, MetroPCS has a couple and, no, they aren’t worth mentioning.) The LTE phones available from Verizon right now are otherwise somewhat behind the curve on hardware. Once either the Galaxy S II or the Bionic launches, though, there will be no reason not to go ahead and get an LTE phone unless perhaps you live in the middle of nowhere and expect to be among the last to get LTE service.

    It doesn’t really matter that Verizon is the only carrier because AT&T’s network stinks anyway. You’re lucky to get 3G with AT&T or (especially) T-Mobile, much less LTE, while Verizon’s 3G network covers nearly everywhere. The most compelling reason to get an LTE phone right now is that Verizon is soon getting rid of their unlimited data plans and, if you don’t already have one, you need to get it before next Thursday (7/7/11,) in order to get your plan grandfathered in.

    It also doesn’t matter that iPhone doesn’t have it, yet. Why would I not buy hardware just because Apple, as usual, is behind on it? If I always waited to buy hardware until Apple had it, I’d be at least a year behind any time I made a hardware purchase.

  19. Moridrocks says

    If you are going to write an article about LTE services available right now then you should write about them all and list all phones available.

    Not all MetroPcs users have “bad credit”. I have had all the major carriers in the US and have never been fully happy with any of them, they all have something different to offer AT&T had the iPhone, Verizion had androids, Sprint had push to talk and Metro had flat rate before anyone else.

    I have had a Droid X, an iPhone 4G and an Evo and of all the phones and networks I’ve had I have stuck with MetroPcs for the longest nearly 8years (I often had two phones) their INTERNATIONAL calling is the best I have ever had and the quality is no worse than the other carriers and for a flat $60/month LTE android vs $400+ on all the others its a no brainer. Sure their phones are behind the curve and always will be but the savings do make them a runner in the LTE market.

    “Right now NO carrier has a great 4GLTE service and the phones are certainly not where they should be which is why if you are considering buying a LTE smartphone you should maybe wait.”

  20. Calsportmedia2460 says

    I dropped my Motorola Droid recently and broke it, replaced it with a Thunderbolt and although that battery life was a problem, the extended battery solves that. Outside of that its a fantastic devise, better then the Droid in every way and the 4g is heaven. Feeling sorry for my wife and that iPhone 4.

  21. Brangeleno says

    “the lack of applications on the Android market that take advantage of 4G LTE speeds.”

    Really?? what application doesnt take advantage of a fast network connection? On the other hand most applications – and android itself – are not optimized for multiple cores.

    If you dont like the options i get it but why even write the article if you have so many things to research still.

    single core isnt an issue IMO. network speeds and RAM are.

    the LG Revolution supports voice over LTE (VoLTE) so its the most future proof

    • Snarky Wombat says

      With all the inaccuracies I just chalked it up to “weak” authorship.  However this “lack of applications” comment cracked me up.  It demonstrates a lack of understanding of apps, networks, and critical thinking. ;-)

  22. Brangeleno says

    “the lack of applications on the Android market that take advantage of 4G LTE speeds.”

    Really?? what application doesnt take advantage of a fast network connection? On the other hand most applications – and android itself – are not optimized for multiple cores.

    If you dont like the options i get it but why even write the article if you have so many things to research still.

    single core isnt an issue IMO. network speeds and RAM are.

    the LG Revolution supports voice over LTE (VoLTE) so its the most future proof

  23. ShanikuaKnows says

    Sorry to tell you Adam Mills, but you’re never going to keep up with technology. Once you get your 4G LTE smartphone with the latest hardware, it will be old news in 6 months to a year. When you get your dual-core, nice little smartphone, the next day, there will be a quad-core phone being announced. Barely a little over a year ago a single-core 1GHZ processor was the latest and greatest. Now, the dual-core is the latest and greatest. And let me tell you, in May, I got the HTC Thunderbolt and it’s wonderful. It’s not slow at all. I have 4G in my hometown and it’s not like I’m going to visit my family in other places every week. I’m not going to visit my grandma Shay every week in Oregon. Just get something now and I’m sure that in 2013 there will be better than this year and next year(of course!).

  24. el futuro says

    Nah… I’m waiting, but not for most of these reasons. LTE will be king, so all that talk about whatever you’re talking about is nonsense. Trust me. I’m from the future.

  25. Giff says

    I find it very interesting and not the least bit biased :p that this review is written by an iPhone user…no irony there eh?….I purchased the Thunderbolt in March, have only had 1 random reboot in 5 months (all smartphone users should reboot their phone every few days as a matter of principle, it is after all a handheld computer and only takes a minute) and have been on the 4g network since May.  I am very pleased with it, experience absolutely zero buffering when watching videos or streaming music, and am amazed by the up and download speeds.  Page changes while surfing, I.E. espn.com, CNN.com, and facebook etc. are next to instantaneous instead of “building” over a 5-10 second period.  I think readers would be better served getting reviews and information from an OBJECTIVE source, say consumer reports or cnet, not another apple fanboy.

  26. Nickolfortna says

    Wait, did you just say Android is a “fabulous operating system”?
    Ummm…bullshit

    • Gmtuleman says

      You obviously have a strong opinion about Android. How about telling us all why this is. I have had three Android devices d2, dx, and now thunderbolt. By far the most unregretable decisions I have ever made. Most everything you could want or need can be had for free if you research. Unlike Microsoft that never stops digging in my pockets. I have over 20 years experience in the technology field, a computer science degree. Maybe Windows 7 is stable and works good, but after spending my hard earned money on at least 7 Microsoft operating system’s I am done. Viruses and hardware software compatability issues neverending headaches. Now that is a crappy OS. MAC is ok, mainly due to price of hardware and you must pay pay pay for apps, etc. More variety of apps but Android will catch up and surpass them in no time. Any issue or obstacle I have found with Android can be addressed with a little time effort and intelligence. I can see quite a few people here lacking in that department. Get a life mister metro pcs man. And for the Android haters keep feeding the Microsoft pig, and MAC to a lesser degree. I will be sticking with the future, open source OS Android. If you don’t like it bite me. If you have a locked bootloader unlock it. If you want root get it. Makes no sense why people take an opinion and try to sway people’s opinions when they don’t post any relevant information to back it up. Lastly opinions are like assholes we all got them but that don’t mean we all need to see them. I only did this post because of they ridiculous cocking fight over who is right on any small technicality or typo in a post. I sure hope the point of the article comes through. Lack of 4g options yes, network coverage yes but constantly changing. I for one got the unlimited 4g data while it isn’t extinct. Verizon has always given reliable service and coverage and expect that to continue even in areas where other networks struggle. Does this mean it is the best i dont know, but it is the best for me yes. Do I have the newest or greatest hardware now no, but i am comforted by the insurance of a complete fast 4g unlimited data plan that will in the next year and a half will work coast to coast. Hardware can be changed.

  27. Nickolfortna says

    Wait, did you just say Android is a “fabulous operating system”?
    Ummm…bullshit

  28. Joshua. says

    I see no problem with Metro’s LTE setup. They’re getting the LG Esteem soon and when a better phone comes after it, I won’t have to pay an early upgrade fee. It’s completely unlimited for $60 a month. That means no data caps or usage fees. How is that irrelevant? Metro doesn’t have the best network but, you’re getting the most for your money. You must know all facts about a subject before you actually publish anything. Otherwise, you’re not a real journalist, just another someone with a computer.

  29. Thedeadjoker says

    I would love to see a review on the droid bionic in relationship to this article &LTE

  30. Fuckinhugetitties says

    What college gave you you’re degree for journalism? Droid Bionic. Biased hoe bag. 

    Love TM ;)

    • Trollercoaster says

      obviously you don’t have a degree in English —> “What college gave you [you're] degree…”

      dumb trailer trash.

      Love, an English speaker ;)

  31. Saestioco says

    10/27/2011
    DO NOT get a 4G Lte phone. Got a samsung 4g phone and could not get stable connections in LA, Phoenix and El Paso. It was the most expensive paper weight I have ever purchased. Returned to Verizon and traded in for 3G phone.

  32. Darren Shupe says

    I’m doing fine with my Droid Bionic here in New York.  I’ve had no problem whatsoever with 4g connections here or when I travel around the country.

    I think I can live with this phone for the next few years that my Verizon contract requires.  After that, I’ll just see what the new hot thing is.

  33. Darren Shupe says

    (I should add that that last was stated ironically – I couldn’t care less what’s “hot” – I want a phone that is effective.)   Thank you for indulging me, though, and for an excellent article that helped me.

  34. Jtaylorjazznote says

    So, would you say that sticking with a 3G dual core phone is the way to go at lease until spring 2012 ?

  35. Guitarkid316 says

    Very biased review as I see it. You make a few good points but you don’t need a dual core processor to make a good phone. Especially if you are using a 600mhz iphone 3gs at the moment like you said. I’m sorry man but I gotta’ be quite frank. This pretty biased.

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