Somebody pinch me, I must be dreaming. Verizon Wireless has finally issued an official press release detailing the launch of their first 4G LTE handset, the HTC Thunderbolt. The most recently rumored release date of March 17th looked all but locked in thanks to recent leaks, but you can go ahead and circle the date on your calendar. This Thursday, the Thunderbolt will be available for all.
The Thunderbolt will retail for $249.99 on a two-year contract, and 4G data plans keep the same pricing scheme as Verizon’s current 3G offerings. $29.99 gets you unlimited data. Until May 15th, all Thunderbolt owners will also receive free use of Big Red’s mobile hotspot capabilities.
Now that we know the date is official, life can finally return to normalcy. See below for the full press release.
THE THUNDERBOLT™ BY HTC, THE FIRST 4G LTE SMARTPHONE FOR VERIZON WIRELESS ARRIVES MARCH 17
ThunderBolt™ by HTC Available Beginning March 17
BASKING RIDGE, N.J. – Verizon Wireless and HTC today announced that the ThunderBolt™ by HTC, exclusively from Verizon Wireless, is available on March 17 in Verizon Wireless Communications Stores and online at www.verizonwireless.com for $249.99 with a new two-year customer agreement.
Powered by Android™ 2.2, the ThunderBolt by HTC is the first smartphone to take advantage of Verizon Wireless’ 4G LTE network. The ThunderBolt by HTC features the latest version of the HTC Sense™ experience, which offers enhancements including new personalization options, a consolidated e-mail inbox, and unique camera effects and filters. The ThunderBolt by HTC is equipped with support for Google Mobile Services, including Gmail™, YouTube™ and Android Market™ with thousands of free apps. Additionally, the ThunderBolt by HTC will feature 4G LTE optimized apps such as EA’s Rock Band, Gameloft’s Let’s Golf, Tunewiki and Bitbop.
4G LTE – customers can expect download speeds of 5 to 12 Mbps and upload speeds of 2 to 5 Mbps in 4G Mobile Broadband coverage area
4.3” WVGA display
8- megapixel rear facing camera and HD (720p) video recording
1.3- megapixel front facing camera with video chatting capabilities
Newest generation of the 1GHz Snapdragon processor
Mobile Hotspot capability – share 4G connection with up to eight Wi-Fi-enabled devices
8 GB of onboard memory and a pre-installed 32 GB microSD card (Actual formatted capacity will be less)
Built-in kickstand for easy media viewing
With the ThunderBolt by HTC, customers will need to subscribe to a Verizon Wireless Nationwide Talk plan and a 4G LTE data package. Nationwide Talk plans begin at $39.99 monthly access and an unlimited 4G LTE data plan is $29.99 monthly access.
Mobile Hotspot allows users to connect up to eight Wi-Fi-enabled devices to the nation’s fastest wireless network via an application available on the ThunderBolt by HTC. Mobile Hotspot will be included through May 15 for no additional charge. After May 15, customers may choose to activate Mobile Hotspot for $20 for 2 GB of data per month. Customers can track their data usage by downloading the My Verizon app available in Android Market or by logging on to their My Verizon accounts online at www.verizonwireless.com/myverizon.
For additional information on Verizon Wireless 4G LTE visit www.verizonwireless.com/4glte. For more information about the ThunderBolt by HTC please visit www.verizonwireless.com/thunderbolt. For additional information on Verizon Wireless products and services, visit a Verizon Wireless Communications Store, call 1-800-2 JOIN IN or go to www.verizonwireless.com.