As Apple forges an iPhone5 capable of handling the might of Android phones from the Samsung and Motorola clan, there is another foe waiting in the corner- HTC with its lineup of superphones.
While Apple expressed its angst against Samsung by filing a patent infringement lawsuit, HTC is not new to such legal tantrums. HTC was the center of patent infringement lawsuits filed by Apple in 2010.
HTC was at the receiving end of Apple's lawsuits when Apple filed an infringement case against HTC in March 2010 citing 20 of its patents related to iPhone's UI, underlying architecture and hardware design. HTC countersued Apple citing five patents.
This year its Samsung's turn to bear the brunt of patent lawsuits from Apple. However, while Apple has fixed its gaze upon Samsung's product profile, HTC has lined a gamut of superphones like HTC Sensation, EVO 3D and Thunderbolt which can challenge the upcoming iPhone 5.
HTC launched Thunderbolt 4G LTE smartphone at the CES 2011. The phone is described as blazingly fast which brings the freshness of Verizon's LTE network to the fore front.
The Thunderbolt packs in a 4.3-inch display with 800x480 screen resolution. The phone's key drawback is its processor as it is powered by a single-core 1GHz Qualcomm MSM8655 Snapdragon chipset.
Apple will be able to tackle the aforementioned HTC features with aplomb if the rumored features are true. It is rumored that iPhone 5 will sport an edge-to-edge screen while other rumors suggest that iPhone 5 will sport a 3.7-inch curved glass screen. Also, it is surmised that iPhone 5 will be powered by A5 dual-core chip which currently powers its iPad 2.
HTC Thunderbolt features an 8MP rear-facing camera which allows 720p video capture capability. However, a report that Apple placed an order with OmniVision to supply 90 percent of the sensors for its 8MP iPhone 5 camera confirms that Apple is in good stead to handle HTC Thunderbolt's camera specification. It is also reported that Apple will add an improved flash unit to the iPhone 5 camera, as Apple has reduced the order for Philips LED flash which grace the iPhone 4. It is additionally expected that iPhone 5 will play 1080p videos as recently users who ran iOs 5 on iPad 2 were able to play 1080p videos on iPad 2.
The Thunderbolt offers 8GB internal memory and 768 MB RAM. The phone weighs 5.7 oz and is 0.51-inch thin which is rather on the heavier side when compared with the new breed of ultra-thin phones launched by Samsung. HTC Thunderbolt is rather hefty as it is 4.8-inch tall and 2.6-inch wide. Apple has constantly been reducing the iPhone's thickness. The iPhone 3G was 12.33 mm and the iPhone 4 is about 9.3mm. Hence, it is possible that Apple will further reduce iPhone 5's thickness.
HTC Thunderbolt runs on HTC Sense atop the Android 2.2 or Froyo juice. Android and Me reports that over-the-air Android 2.3.4 Gingerbread update is coming to HTC Thunderbolt on June 30. The update will bring features like Skype Video, Gtalk video functionality, HTC Sense 2.1, enhanced GPS features and pre-installed Amazon Appstore to Thunderbolt.
Apple iPhone 5 will come pre-loaded with iOS 5 and will possibly be a worldphone with a SIM-less design featuring 2 or 3 internal antennas for both GSM and CDMA compatibility. iPhone 5 is also touted to usher in voice recognition features and NFC-enabled mobile payment option iWallet.
Apple is surmised to release its iPhone 5 in September at the iPod refresh event. Another LTE phone in the same league as Thunderbolt, the Droid Bionic from the Motorola clan, is due to be released in the third quarter. Thus, Apple has to counter three phones on the Verizon LTE network HTC Thunderbolt, Motorola Droid Bionic and Samsung's Droid Charge. Nonetheless, whether Apple will release an iPhone5 for LTE network is still subject to assumption.
Until Droid Bionic arrives Apple has HTC Thunderbolt to deal with but with the rumored specifications coming iPhone 5's way, it seems HTC Thunderbolt will be no match for iPhone 5.