I had a chance to review the HTC Thunderbolt 4G smartphone and the Verizon 4G Mifi unit, thanks to Verizon Wireless and Kyle Communications, Verizon’s PR firm here in Indianapolis.
Right after I reviewed the video, and griped for several seconds about the battery life on the Thunderbolt, James from Kyle Communications showed up to pick up the phone, and told me the reason the battery life is so short is because this is a 4G unit, and it’s carrying a bigger load. Some people have said the Samsung unit has a better battery life, but James says that’s because it’s still a 3G unit. He says Samsung’s new 4G Fascinate will have similar issues. However, they have an extended battery available at Verizon, although James didn’t know much about it. My only concern with the Thunderbolt, other than the one I stated in the video, is that the battery life could be an issue if you find yourself in a place where you don’t have any access to power. Otherwise, you’ll want power cords in your car, your office, and your home just to make sure you don’t run out.
Do you have a Thunderbolt or a Samsung Fascinate? What have you found? Do you use a Mifi? Love it or hate it? Let me know what technology you’re using, or what technology you would like me to review, and I’ll see what I can do.
After I posted this video, I received an update from my new bestie, Michelle Gilbert, the Verizon PR genius who arranged for me to review these units. (She can be even more geniuser if she can arrange for me to do a two year review of the Xoom.) Here are some corrections she offered, and I’m just posting them verbatim.
With respect to the 4G mobile hotspot device, you are correct that when you tether it to your laptop (for charging or any other purpose), you make it a private connection. If you charge it in the wall, however, you can still use it as a Wi-Fi hotspot.
I also wanted to address your concerns about the battery life on the Thunderbolt and your conversation with James. James is correct that a 4G device works harder than a 3G device, so battery life may be impacted. With that being said, however, I have used both devices and do feel that the Samsung DROID Charge has stronger battery life. I think it boils down to what operating system does a customer prefer – HTC or Samsung? Both are great devices. I do agree with you that Thunderbolt users should invest in an extended battery and car charger.
For your blog post, I’m not sure if you want to clarify, but there is no 4G Fascinate. The Samsung 4G smartphone is the DROID Charge.
After Michelle’s clarification, I am convinced that I’ll stick with the HTC and just get the extended battery. And given the fact that I take my laptop with me everywhere I go, I can always plug the USB charger into the computer and charge up the Thunderbolt that way. Plus if they made one for the mini-USB, I would even consider getting a hand crank charger.
Thanks again to Michelle for the great information, and for letting me try out these new devices. Looking forward to getting one of my own.