Apple iPhone 5 vs HTC Thunderbolt: 3G or 4G LTE Dilemma

Today finally sees the release of the HTC ThunderBolt on Verizon and this latest Android smartphone looks set to be a big hit. The ThunderBolt’s big selling point is it’s 4G capability, which means it can be used on Verizon’s 4G LTE network and now we want to take a look at the Apple iPhone 5 vs. HTC ThunderBolt with respect to their likely 3G and 4G capabilities.

Yesterday we published a roundup about the iPhone 5 in which we asked many questions about what we might expect and one of those questions regarded whether it might be a 4G phone for LTE. On balance we felt that it’s not likely that we’ll see if for the iPhone incarnation this time around, although there have been rumors that LTE is on Apple’s roadmap. An article by Dan Frommer on Business Insider also tells how it’s not likely that we’ll see a 4G iPhone until 2012.

We also published a pros and cons article on the HTC ThunderBolt and although it’s an impressive phone with 1GHz processor, 8-megapixel camera and 4.3-inch touchscreen, as far as drawbacks are concerned it’s a shame it will be running Android 2.2 out of the gate rather than Android 2.3. It also only has a single-core processor rather than being one of the new dual-core processor handsets, such as the upcoming Motorola Droid Bionic or Motorola Atrix 4G which is out now. Its big plus though is undoubtedly that 4G capability and Alan Ng of Product-Reviews tells how this will give speeds of up to 5-12 Mbps downstream and 2-5Mbps upstream.

As far as the iPhone 5 is concerned Ng also feels that it’s most unlikely that it will be a 4G phone although it seems very probable that it will have an A5 dual-core processor, as we’ve just seen included on the iPad 2 when it was released last week. This will leave many in a dilemma. The ThunderBolt with 4G but only a single-core processor, or the iPhone 5 which is likely to only be a 3G phone but should have a dual-core processor? Of course the ThunderBolt is also available from today whereas the likely release date for the iPhone 5 is not until June so that may also influence your decision.

If you’re drawn to both of these phones what is going to be the deciding factor for you, 4G or 3G, single-core or dual-core? We’re interested to know which you opt for and whether you’re going to choose the HTC Thunderbolt, or are prepared to wait instead for the iPhone 5 so please send us your comments about this.

  • Whale

    Free willie! But seriously, how long will unlimited be $30?

  • Jesse

    Considering that any smartphone I get will have to last at least 2 years, I will probably wait for the next generation iPhone. I do not find the need to customize every aspect of the phone. I simply like the refined and reliable function of Apple products. I think it would be hard to call me a fanboy as I don't have a smartphone as of right now, and my experience with Apple is limited to their iPod Touch (3rd Gen?).

  • David

    4G, hands down. And not the fake AT&T kind either, I mean real, engineered, FAST 4G not tweaked, repackaged 3G+

  • Lofty

    I will get the Thunderbolt now and then sell it if I like the iPhone 5 better and get that one.

  • kjkj

    if the iphone 5 isnt 4g. ALOT of people will be very very pissed and will not buy it

    • Yup

      I couldn't agree more! I have a iPhone 3G and my contract finally ended in February and would like to upgrade to the iPhone 5! It would be pathetic if it did not have 4G/LTE! The iphone 4 is so far behind the 8 ball it's not funny. I love the simplicity of iOS and the volume of non-crap apps (don't get me wrong there are a ton of crap apps in the app store), but if the phone does not have 4G/LTE It'd be stupid to wait 16+ months for an iPhone that is finally caught up with today's current hardware. I WILL be switching to Android if the next iPhone is a let down!

  • James

    Again we always have to choose the best of the weak feature sets. The iphone 5 was attractive because of its GSM/CDMA world capabilities, not just the processor. 4G is out there in major cities for all carriers and Apple would be once again screwing us by not including the lates technology. This is why I didn't buy a Droid…"should I get the one with the keyboard and crappy camera or the one with no keyboard (touch) and a good camera?" Why can't both phones have a good camera? They came out at the same time. Bah…A-hole manufacturers.

  • realistdreamer

    I ordered a wifi iPad which I will need to tether. I need 4G for that. If the iPhone doesn't have it, I'll get the best phone in June that does and probably get a 1 year contract instead of 2 (or a 12-month upgrade). I'll probably need a battery pack because of 4G drain, but given my web/video/pandora usage, 4G is a must for iPad and phone.

    Unfortunately, I think Apple will wait for the T-mobile merger so it can offer the same radio to Verizon and AT&T