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HTC Thunderbolt Ads Removed from YouTube, New $699 Price, and Delays Now Due to Short Battery Life?

Another wonderful weekend for the HTC Thunderbolt, eh?  Let’s see if we can sort of summarize everything that just happened in a couple of quick paragraphs since writing about it has become more of a chore than anything.  After all, this device is quickly becoming the world’s most controversial when it was originally supposed to be a world’s first.  

So let’s start with the rumors coming out of the Engadget news room which claim that battery issues are to blame for all of these delays.  Apparently, testers are seeing 3 to 4 hours of battery life with the LTE radio turned on and so far no fixes have been successful.  There is supposed to be a firmware update coming in the near future and it will address these issues, but who knows how long it’ll take to test it and then make it available to end users.  This story actually makes a little bit of sense, especially when we look back and see that four different HTC RUU’s for the device have leaked out since December.

The second bit of news has to do with the TBolt ads which have been live on Verizon’s YouTube channel for almost a week now.  All of them are now set to private and can no longer be viewed in any capacity including the rooftop spot.  We thought that all issues with the device had been figured out once they had 2 different ads running on TV, but now that both have been pulled, it’s hard to believe the device is going to be here any time soon.

And the last bit of news is pretty random, but actually comes off as positive if it ends up sticking.  We had a few tipsters submit the picture you’ll see below which is of a shopping cart on HTC’s site with the Thunderbolt inside of it.  The $699 price is the real story here, especially after seeing $749 from Best Buy over and over again and actually almost had us cracking a miniature smile.

Some day we’ll have good news abouts this phone, but it doesn’t sound like it will be this week.

Cheers Louis, Mike, Cameron, asdf and all others!

  • Dizzoriented

    does this support youtube? 

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  • Gunn_tony

    Seriously…..its a freaking phone. do we really need to get all of our panties in a wad over this? i want the t’bolt, but can wait for it. there are always setbacks and things that make us have delays in life. its really not a big deal…

  • Anonymous

    I think the phone needing 2 radios to opperate at the same time for voice and data will turn out to be the problem here. When the fully baked LTE phones ship that do simultaneous voice/data on LTE and only need to switch between the radios for coverage reasons then these issues won’t be as severe. I’m not knocking HTC, as I’m sure their next “full” LTE phone will also not have these problems. Again, IMO.

  • Michael

    Such a common problem for majority of Android phones!

  • iLte

    This is just incomprehensible – why is so difficult for vzw to release a bunch of LTE phones, like all other carries have already did (4G) , with reasonable (149$ 199$) contract prices? is it all because of the iphone? They announced their LTE network months ago, yet there are no phones.

    • Anonymous

      In Verizon’s defence, only Metro PCS is running 4G, all the rest are HSPA+ which not really a new or different technology. This has nothing to do with the iphone.

  • Starhelius17

    What is this, like the Charlie Sheen of Droid-Life, where I can hardly get any other news about the Droid world because the site is bogged down with the wacky antics of this device?! Geez, I wish this thing would just spontaneously combust or something so we can move on to something else.

    Oh, on a side note, this is exactly why Apple has its dominance–organization, and repetition. People like repetition. When they release a tablet, not only are they first to do so (making all else who follow, no matter how good, look like an imitator), but there isn’t any of all this drama–no goofs, no slips, no bugs, etc. (and it ony happened once with their phone, and I’m certain someone within Apple was slain for that one).

    Why is it that when it’s time for an Android tablet, there are a million things wrong with it?! It’s so flippin’ frustrating, because I DESPISE Apple’s marketing and business model, and how many millions blindly subscribe to it, but how does Google ever expect themselves to be taken seriously when they appear to the casual onlooker as, for all intents and purposes, bumbling jack*sses?!

  • Gfunk

    That’s what they make extended life batteries for.

  • Monique

    although the battery issue may be just a rumor, it really shouldn’t surprise anyone. I mean, I had a Droid Inc and the battery life was pretty terrible. The Evo is also known to suffer from battery issues especially when using WiMax. It just seems to me that HTC doesn’t make phones with good battery life although they make really good phones (I love Sense)… And I’m sure LTE, a new technology, is adding to their battery issues. I really don’t see why people are getting so upset over this. It’s just a phone! Besides that, VZW has never officiallly said anything about a release date period. I don’t care what Best Buy has said nor do I care that BB is a retailer for VZW. It doesn’t matter. VZW is the official retailer for this phone. everyone else, is just a 3rd party retailer.

  • Angelc0719

    HTC SUCKS!!! lol

  • Beka27

    Low battery life, huh? Well, in the TB’s defense… it takes A LOT of power for those lightning bolts and large claps of thunder… ***FLASH!!!*** ***Ka-BOOOOOOM!!!*** 5 minutes later: “powering down…” LOL. But seriously, I hope they get this issue figured out soon.

  • Unimpressed

    what else is new? overpriced, has HTC’s trademark poor battery life and isn’t even dual core. i pity the schmuck who pays $700 for this slightly larger Incredible.

  • Whaaaaa

    if this crap HTC is pulling delays the DROID bionic from making its appearance i am going to be pi$$ed…

    • Tim242

      This “crap” is not the doing of HTC. They shipped that phone weeks ago. You can thank APPLE for this.

  • Aaa

    My enV2 just broke so I would really like this phone. It is the best that Verizon has to offer at the moment. Well, if it gets released anyway.

  • Anonymous

    You know, I think I’ve stated this before on DL with other phones coming out half A$$. Manufactories are in such a rush to get thier devices out that bugs, serious malfuctions or whatever elase has the consumer on hold. The Xoom is another device that has consumers sending in thier tablets to get an upgrade. WHY??? Why can’t manufactorures get it right the first time or just test the device before pushing out inconvience!!!
    I agree with those that say “Don’t say it’s ready till it’s ready” What an embarrassment for Verizon and HTC,
    and most of all US the supporters of Android and the consumers that have to put up with this mess.

    • Tim242

      1. This phone was in development for 8 months. I wouldn’t call this rushed. 2. The battery issue is just a rumor.

      • Anonymous

        Well first 8 months is nothing when it comes to hardware and software
        development, try talking about just the software and then going thruough an
        Agile development project 1 to 2 years depending on sprint and thats if the
        regression testing is acceptable and if the bugs are not that bugs. But
        yeah 8 months to test a phone plus all of the software and hardware, c’mon
        maybe like you said it’s just a rumore but there have been other phones
        release with software updates due to getting the phone out in a rush to meet
        deployment times.

        Answer me this, what happened with the Xoom?? Why couldn’t Moto just wait
        for the product to be complete before shipping out the tablets only to have
        consumers to send it back in for an upgrade?? Thats product management,
        that’s pusing out product before it’s even ready!! Moto couldn’t go back
        and say hey we need more time, because CES was right around the corner and
        Moto had to get thie Xoom outatleast by Q2. Software projects run the same
        way trust me I work in the field :)

        • http://twitter.com/BiggiePhat JG

          Thanks Professor Software Engineer

      • Anonymous

        I’m sending u a link that I promised
        http://janiesno1entertainmentshop.com/about.html Hope u like it.

  • Lhj4500

    I think it will actually happen April 1st since they are all playing us as fools………….

  • Anonymous

    Wow, this is pretty funny. A lot of people think that Verizon gives a damn enough about iPhone sales that they’d purposely make up an internal lie about why the Thunderbolt is delayed, and have it be leaked. You’ve got to be kidding me. They don’t care THAT much, and if they do, and this whole theory is real, HTC is probably REALLY pissed off.

    • iDroiduDroid

      It’s called fanboy blindness. Makes them see things that aren’t there. I’m passing the Thunderbolt and waiting for the Bionic myself.

      • Tim242

        Dual core is hype. So, you want it just to brag. Who is the blind fanboy?

        • iDroiduDroid

          Still you. My upgrade is up in August. Did I say anything about dual-core? I actually prefer Motorola.

          • Tim242

            All the more reason you are a blind fanboy. You dismiss on just brand. Thanks for clearing that up.

          • iDroiduDroid

            No, I made a decision to try to support companies in my country. It’s sacrifice, I know, but that’s my decision. Call me a fanboy of America but don’t call me a fanboy of phones.

          • Tim242

            And where do you think Motorola phones are manufactured? Not in the US!

          • iDroiduDroid

            Still an American company. I know pretty much all electronics are built overseas but Motorola is based in the US. Like I said, I try to support my country’s companies and buying from Motorola is closer to that goal than buying from HTC.

          • Tim242

            HTC has a significant presense in the US. They are about to open a huge new operation in North Carolina. They support the US economy as much, if not more than Moto.

          • iDroiduDroid

            Here are some quick WikiPedia articles:

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Motorola
            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HTC_Corporation

            Spoiler alert: Motorola provides more than just phones to the US.

            I’ll give you HTC’s North Carolina research office. It’ll provide some jobs. Anyway, I’ll support my companies and you’ll support yours.

          • OHHHSNAPPP!!!

            Tim242, u got served an asswhippin of facts! I like people that know their facts.

          • http://twitter.com/BiggiePhat JG

            do you drive a ford, drink budwiser, and cry everrytime the National Anthem comes on too?

            …God Bless America…

        • Unimpressed

          how many cores does your computer you are posting from have? how many will all future phones have? to say 1 core is just as good as 2 is absurd.

        • GG

          Dual-Core is hype.. I agree! I love how all these ‘self-proclaimed’ expert consumers assume that this is better. What.. so, instead of 3-hour battery life from the HTC Thunderbolt, you can brag about getting 1-HOUR of battery life from a Dual-Core phone?? LOL Yay!

    • Tim242

      In case you missed it, this is just a rumor. So, for you to state it as fact is silly.

    • Tim242

      In case you missed it, this is just a rumor. So, for you to state it as fact is silly.

      • DaveMI

        The iPhone rumor has only been said by people (you) in comments and not buy any news or tech blog with real sources. Where as the high price and battery life issues were.

        • Tim242

          As we know, if it’s a rumor in blogs, it must be true. Speculation is speculation whether it be in blogs, or in the comments. Three Verizon store managers told me it is iphone related. That sounds more convincing than them just discovering a battery issue at release time, 8 months after the phone was developed. Believe what makes sense to you, I’ll do the same.

          • Guest

            lol if it’s a rumor in blog comments it must be true? oh man

  • Anonymous

    I don’t understand the hype for this phone. Only reason I can think of is that it is an HTC phone based off the Desire HD meaning it should be easy to root and doesn’t have any locked bootloader nonsense. Other than that just seems like a standard phone. I for one would like more info on the DROID BIONIC.

    • JimV

      The hype is because its Verizon’s 1st LTE capable phone, that’s it. Otherwise, it’s not much different then AT&T’s $99 Inspire.

      • Anonymous

        I guess I’m just not getting the hype for LTE then. Yes, it is nice and fast but how many people actually have LTE available in their area right now? LTE for me is probably one of the last factors in my decision on an upgrade.

        • JimV

          Ya, if you don’t have LTE in your area now then you’re better off waiting for an LTE phone when the coverage comes. These people should be looking at other factors like CPU, RAM, keyboard, form factor, dimensions, etc.

          • http://twitter.com/BiggiePhat JG

            if the 4g plan is the same as the unlimited 3g plan in price, why wait and risk getting sucked into verizon and their tiered plans? take the tbolt, lock in the price for 2 years.

        • LionStone

          Well I guess if you don’t have 4g in your area then the T-Bolt may not be the best choice for you. However for myself, I already have 4g in the East Bay, South Bay and North Bay Area…all the areas I work and play as well as Southern Cali. When I travel across to the East coast, any city I may connect to has 4g now…Chicago, New York, Detroit, Atlanta and my final destination has it too, NC. So for some of us, a 4g phone is gonna work out just fine when we actually get it and we will!

  • Playa

    I’m prolly just gonna wait for the Droid Bionic! The only reason I wanted the Thunderbolt was because it was the first 4G phone and I couldn’t wait. I’m over the Thunderbolt, I’m gonna wait for the Bionic, it’s a better phone anyway. My OG Droid still has a few months in it : )

    • Johnnydoe

      Ill never buy motorola sh!t again. This motorblur sucks a big ol.fat hairy back!

    • iLte

      I agree, this phone has more hype associated with it than the Vz iPhone..

  • Turd

    I know someone who works for Verizon and she told me that Best Buy will start selling the TB on March 1st. The phone will be bundled with the Blu-ray release of Bambi (out that same day) and retail for $449.99 after $350 rebate. The phone will not be sold with battery at this time, but Best Buy will provide a workaround kit that includes a mini-USB plug, electrical tape, and 8 D-cell batteries.

    • Anonymous

      That’s the most stupid and absurd rumor ever…yah like its going to be cheaper than a droid x…and work around battery. Lol

      • Guest

        lol *whoosh*

    • Anonymous

      That’s the most stupid and absurd rumor ever…yah like its going to be cheaper than a droid x…and work around battery. Lol

      • Anonymous

        That’s the worst case of not reading sarcasm I have ever seen. Ya like he was being serious, and Bambi, that didn’t give it away? lol

      • turdsandwhich

        what a freakin idiot. u really thought that was real?? hahahaha

      • http://www.facebook.com/Spyrojoe Brad Brock

        Wow. Never before have I seen a sarcasm fail of this magnitude.

      • Anonymous

        lol, well after 20 hours of no sleep, im pretty tiered. thats all i have to say.

  • Anonymous

    Just put a better quality battery – come on HTC .!

  • Anonymous

    With the questionable battery issue, I need to know if with the design of this phone. Ill be able to utilize an extended battery?

  • Anonymous

    Does anyone still want this outdated piece of inferior crap. Seriously, its specs are would have been impressive like a year ago.

  • Scea0512

    it seems like they are trying to prevent people from paying full retail for this phone and only setting it up for new customers to lock them in ?? $700.00 for a PHONE !!! Verizon is sniffing glue thats for sure !!! there is NO chance in hell I will spend that kind of money on a verizon Evo

    • Mr.Joe

      yeah, verizon is sniffing glue. Cause you know they made the phone.

      Verizon supplies the subsidized price for the phone and works with them to create it. HTC creates the full retail. I’m sure verizon isn’t too thrilled about it either considering they have to pay HTC for the phones.

    • Mr.Joe

      yeah, verizon is sniffing glue. Cause you know they made the phone.

      Verizon supplies the subsidized price for the phone and works with them to create it. HTC creates the full retail. I’m sure verizon isn’t too thrilled about it either considering they have to pay HTC for the phones.

  • Anonymous

    I find it very hard to believe that the battery life is the cause for delay. All of the HTC phones have a shorter battery life. I could only get about 3-4 hours of use with my DInc and my EVO gets about the same. The issue is even necessarily that the battery stinks, it is that we love our phones and are constantly on them sucking the juice for internet surfing, email, game apps, etc… How long does a Nintendo DS or PSP last when playing with them for an extended period of time?

    Who knows what the real reason is behind the delay. Lets just be patient and when it comes out, it comes out.

    • Mr.Joe

      I’ll say that smart phones don’t get great battery but there’s a lot that goes in to better battery. Just accepting that “OH everyone is like that so it’s cool” is BS.

      Why not work on supplying better battery life instead of more tech that just drains faster?

      • Jupiment

        Becasue folks buy tech, not battery life….I for one don’t see the big issue with battery life. I have my POS Hero and 3 USB cords, 1 for my house, one in my car and one at work. Just keep it plugged when not in use and you should be fine 5 days out of the week. For the weekend, you have bigger issues if you are spending that much time on your phone rather than with your significant other or friends.

  • FalseAd or BaitnSwitch

    I just called the 1800 # for Best Buy, asking if they had plans to actually sell the Thunderbolt this week since it is advertised in their paper. The woman told me “the intention is to sell them, but the ad’s purpose was to promote and inform people of the upcoming phone. However! You can pre-order the phone by paying $50 now.” That’s all she would say.

  • Tim242

    3rd and 10th…sound familiar? iphone preorder on the 3rd, released on the 10th. Coincidence? I think not! Poor iphone sales caused this…not a battery issue. This phone has been in development since summer. They didn’t just discover battery issues right at time of release The battery issue is just a rumor. You people bash people for believing rumored release dates, then you believe rumored delayes release date reasons…

    • Anonymous

      Well said Tim!

    • Anonymous

      True…..good sight….so maybe with a win phone 7 announcement tommorow will be a suprise thunderbolt pre order date and release date! ? seriously, i want my phone! lol

    • Anonymous

      but also, its tooo far away!!!

    • Phil

      Do you know for sure Apple has that kind of power over Verizon? From Verizon’s point of view, customers are customers. Doesn’t matter what phone they use. If anything, they’re losing all those customers who would unreasonably never buy an Apple product like me.

      I’m passing Verizon’s version of the Inspire.

    • MD

      Amen +1

  • Anonymous

    I don’t even want one anymore

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Alberto-Aparicio/100001012850070 Alberto Aparicio

    Bring on the Droid Bionic!

  • SamuelJacksonB*tch

    The BlunderBloat. All that ass, but no mutha****in’ gas.

  • cowdog

    One more reason to stick with my plan and wait for summer (or fall) when we get phones shipping with ice cream. Battery life is a deal breaker, and with LTE and multi-core phones it will simply take time to work through some things. In the meantime, I will do my best to avoid the iphone. My wife picked one up, and I have to admit that’s a really nice phone. But for me, I want to keep a balance. I use a MacBook Pro and an iPad, and like to keep at least one foot outside of the Fruit Empire’s control. The OG Droid will have to keep holding on a little longer. CM7 is helping.

    • Anonymous

      i just tried the latest cm7 nightly, and couldnt get rom manager to load the download roms…anything similar from you?

  • Anonymous

    vipstores.net )

  • DBEvans

    Interresting … I realized after reading this that the Mobile Panda had hinted in the past about the 4G sucking the battery dry when he turned it on – none of us ever caught the hint he was leaving.

    Of course, he’s also suggested that the phone was originally supposed to be released closer to St. Patrick’s Day, but was pulled forward for marketing reasons. So if correct, technically, the original launch date still hasn’t been missed … it’s the subsequent leaked earlier dates that were missed – but the phone could still potentially meet the original date! lol.

    • Anonymous

      what saint patricks day? and when is that day again? no really…i forgot.

      • Anonymous

        think shamrocks and leprechauns, and lots and lots of green…march 17th

  • Anonymous

    I’m tired of all of this. Bring on the Incredible 2!

    • Tim242

      That phone that is the same as the original. It just adds .3 to the screen. The front cam is said not to be included on the US version.

    • DanSke

      Agreed. All I want is a 4.3 screen, FFC, 3G, camera in the back and gingerbread. I though 4G might be good, hence I wanted to go with the TB, but if its just gonna suck the battery dry in a matter of hours its not even worth having.

      Its like having a car that can go 0-200 mph in 20 seconds, but right around 4 secs it runs out of gas. Well…..that was fun. *sarcasm*

      • Cliffyaun

        That’s the scope of my needs / wants, as well. My 3g connection on Verizon is plenty fast enough, already. If current battery tech is just not good enough for 4g, then i’ll just wait to make that upgrade.

      • Anonymous

        I agree. 3G is plenty fast for me too. I have moved to the EVO and when I am on 4G, the battery is GONE in 3-4 hours. I don’t even bother turning it on because of this.

  • Jawshua

    If some day you’ll have good news to post, why don’t you wait until that day and stop bombarding the site with garbage about this multiple times a day, like they pay you to, and go back to the old Droid Life days when there was exciting news about new apps and cool new wallpapers and other stuff to download. Anyone else miss those days.

    And just look at Android Life, good

    • Tim242

      Like it or not, this phone is a big deal. Some of us like to know what is going on with it. So, with all due respect, STFU!

      • Godfrey2009

        Thank you Tim! :)