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HTC ThunderBolt Ice Cream Sandwich Update: A Tale of Two Reps



Earlier this month, HTC informed an HTC ThunderBolt owner that Verizon decided that the ThunderBolt was better on Android 2.3 Gingerbread which led many, including us, to wonder whether the long-delayed HTC ThunderBolt Ice Cream Sandwich update was ever going to be coming out.

Now, HTC has managed to make the situation regarding the ThunderBolt ICS update even more confusing telling the exact owner that the information he was given was not only incorrect, but that it didn’t come from HTC.

Read: HTC Rep: Verizon Decided ThunderBolt is Better Without Android 4.0.


The HTC ThunderBolt ICS update situation is beyond confusing.

Many HTC ThunderBolt owners have been contacting HTC representatives, against our advice, in an effort to obtain information about the ThunderBolt’s long-missing Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich update. The update, which was originally supposed to be out by the end of August, is still missing in action, and there is no sign that that status will change by the end of 2012.

Owners who have contacted HTC have received a number of different responses from HTC customer service representatives. We’ve published a few of the more interesting ones here but today’s response tops them all.

In early December, we showed you an email that a ThunderBolt user got from HTC regarding the HTC ThunderBolt update. We verified that it was indeed an email from HTC and subsequently reached out to HTC for comment and were met with complete and utter silence.

Here is that email:


Thank you for contacting HTC. I understand you are wanting the update for the Thunderbolt and will be more than happy to provide you with the appropriate information on why your device has not been updated. The reason the Thunderbolt never received ICS is because when we tested the software on one of our Thunderbolts, the phone was bogged down and started running a lot slower. Verizon decided that the phone functioned better without the ICS update.

I apologize for any inconvenience this causes you XXXXXXXXX. If you have any other questions or concerns, please feel free to send us another email or give us a call between the hours of 6 AM and 1 AM EST at 1-866-449-8358. Thank you for being a valued member of the HTC community and I hope you have a wonderful week!

Let me know if I have successfully answered your question, please click here to complete this.

To send a reply to this message, please click here.


So this HTC representative, for whatever reason, seemed to think that Verizon decided that the ThunderBolt was better off without Android 4.0. Reps have been dead on in the past with their information and they’ve been absolutely wrong in the past, it’s all over the board. But that was the first time we had seen one outright deny that the update was coming.

Today, we received a tip from another HTC ThunderBolt owner. This new response is from another HTC representative in regards to what the other HTC representative said about the update. And like most customer service reps who have responded to HTC ThunderBolt owners, this one has made the situation even more confusing than it already was.

Here is this rep’s response to the previous rep’s response.


Thank you for getting back to me.

XXXXXXXXX, I do not know where this information is coming from, but it is not from HTC. We have heard nothing stating that the Thunderbolt is not going to get Ice Cream Sandwich.

I hope that this sets your mind at rest.

Let me know if I have successfully answered your question, please click here to complete this.

To send a reply to this message, please click here.




Some observations:

  • No one at HTC seems to know what they’re talking about as we now have an HTC rep denying that what is clearly a response from HTC didn’t come from HTC at all.
  • HTC has terrible customer service.
  • The HTC ThunderBolt ICS update may still be coming. Or not.
  • This is not going to set any ThunderBolt owners mind at rest.
  • Above all: Enough is enough.

HTC, Verizon or both absolutely need to decide one way or another at this point because right now, HTC ThunderBolt owners who are waiting for their promised upgrade are being held hostage and that’s absolute nonsense. And if that wasn’t bad enough, the customer service reps who are supposed to be helping owners and at the very least, giving logical information, are instead uninformed.

ThunderBolt owners have been dealing with this nonsense since August and it’s time for clear, sound answers. Or maybe even, some type of an upgrade like Motorola offered owners of its devices that didn’t get Android 4.1 Jelly Bean.



  1. George

    12/17/2012 at 12:50 pm

    Don’t care much, anymore. Can’t wait for CES to see what my next (non-HTC, non-Verizon) phone is going to be, come March!

  2. shaun

    12/17/2012 at 1:40 pm

    i’ve thoroughly enjoyed my thunderbolt, but i would like some definitive answer from either htc or verizon. it would be nice if verizon would give upgrades, but it’ll be a cold day in hell if that ever happens. they want you locked into that “share everything” garbage… gr.

  3. Ordinary Bob

    12/17/2012 at 4:04 pm

    I submitted an inquiry through the email support system. They provided me a non-answer. When I received an email asking me to take a survey, I have them a real bad rating. Within a week, someone called me from HTC to get more information on why I was dissatisfied. I told him about the failure of HTC to manage my expectations. He said he was forwarding my complaint to management, and that the Thunderbolt is definitely getting ICS. So there you go. I have no idea what to believe.

  4. androidcatdog

    12/17/2012 at 4:33 pm

    I was, thanks above, one of the lucky ones. My Tbolt was ok but the T’Bolts were cursed from the start to this very day. I only stayed with Big Red (Note 2, oh, hell yeah!) to keep the unlimited data. Once that’s gone, I’m gone to T-Mo. I’m done with HTC FOREVER.

  5. shawn

    12/17/2012 at 4:37 pm

    I am just giving up I am due for an upgrade and have been eyeballing the razr hd maxx

  6. David P

    12/17/2012 at 7:44 pm

    Don’t care about HTC anymore. I upgraded 3 weeks ago to the Samsung Note 2 and absolutely love it. Have my daughter my thunderbolt and she doesn’t care about ics update! So long HTC, don’t plan on buying another one any time soon!

  7. SchmittyJ

    12/17/2012 at 8:17 pm

    Continued to contact HTC “against our advice”?
    Why would you not want people to ask HTC or Verizon questions?
    Because your own crappy “sources” couldn’t get a tip right if they tried?!
    If someone can get a dozen different answers, even conflicting ones, and ONE happens to be correct, then they’ve done better than all of your “reliable sources” tips ever have, Adam Mills.

  8. CrazyPenguin

    12/17/2012 at 11:37 pm

    VZW made an official announcement on march 6, 2012 giving a list of phones which will be updated to ICS. From the VZW website, “Verizon Wireless WILL deliver a tasty treat to many smartphone and tablet customers this year – Android™ 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich (ICS).” HTC made a similar release on March 13, 2012.

    Now nine months later still no ICS delivered to Thunderbolt users. I no longer trust HTC or VZW. And am done being lied to by these con artists. Time for me to say so long to both HTC and VZW.

  9. .Bad

    12/18/2012 at 1:01 am

    I just want to use Google chrome on my phone. That’s all. I feel I have been patient. Letting phone after phone get my much wanted upgrade to their newer phones. I’m done with cell phone’s all together . thousands of dollars paid. heaven forbid Verizon gets smart and offers the much forgotten thunderbolt users upgrades to suck us into another $2000 two year blood pact.

    I hope you read this Verizon!

    It’ll be a cold day in hell before I renew my contract again.

    You can call me to negotiate on my land line. Most likely with my answering machine.

    Cox cable home line for LIFE!

  10. GSLeon3

    12/18/2012 at 7:40 am

    That is not a comment from an HTC rep. If it was at one time, it has been heavily edited by whomever submitted it to you. I have frequent & regulart dealings with numerous employees at HTC & within their CSR centers. That response is definitely not one that would have ever been officially sent out.

  11. graywolfman

    12/18/2012 at 9:52 am

    I was having constant issues with my TB. Then constant issues with the replacements they were sending me. I finally went on Twitter and told them in the 8+ years I’ve been with Verizon, this is the worst phone I’ve ever owned. I received a call back, received a completely DIFFERENT phone. ICS, no issues at all, and even my reception in “fringe coverage areas” (Verizon’s classification of my workplace in Denver, CO) has doubled. I will never “renew” my contract, I would rather buy off of Craigslist than lose unlimited data and go with this garbage “Share everything” plan. I am an IT professional, data is required for my device to function the way I expected it to when I purchased it. Good riddance HTC, their profits are disappointing to investors, their customer service is as good as a bike without wheels, and they’ve burned a lot of customers. Their time is limited. RIM will be worth more than them if they keep this up. And for Verizon: Thanks for the lies.

  12. Jason

    12/18/2012 at 6:54 pm

    Twitter response saying ICS is still planned as of 12/17

  13. Jay

    12/19/2012 at 3:11 pm

    Most People with the Thunderbolt are on the unlimited data plan still. You think Verizon is going to let a Kick Azz ICS update happen on your Tbolt? Not going to happen. They will see to it that some kind of problem or flaw in the update will make many go crazy and just want to get a newer phone. Many won’t want to pay the full retail price for a new device and they will lose their unlimited data. You wait and see. That’s why the update is taking so long. It’s all timing and the little scheme. My advice to you is not to update to the new OS when it comes availa

    • Jason

      12/19/2012 at 5:03 pm

      I just want the update to be released so the various Devs can get ahold of it and make stable ICS ROMs….. without mix-match parts and data drops or other various bugs.

  14. Cody W

    12/19/2012 at 6:08 pm

    There is a way to keep unlimited data.

    • shaun

      12/19/2012 at 9:06 pm

      other than buying a phone at full retail? do tell…

  15. Rick F

    12/20/2012 at 3:33 am

    It does feel a little like we TB owners are on our backs looking up at HTC & Verizon tinkering with the guillotine blade. I have certainly had my share of issues with the TB (like the battery, of course), but on the whole, I have enjoyed using the phone.

  16. Jon

    12/21/2012 at 9:24 am

    I’m over it. Contract is up in a week. Leaving Verizon for Sprint, leaving HTC for Apple. I held out as long as I could, but it would be nice to have a phone that works and a provider who isn’t trying to screw me with data charges. Enough is enough.

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