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HTC Thunderbolt vs. IPhone 4S

I’m unintentionally doing a bake off of the HTC Thunderbolt vs. the IPhone 4S as a result of the untimely death of my beloved Thunderbolt (note to self: don’t bring your phone into the bathroom with the toilet seat up). For those of you who like to skip to the bottom line, it’s a wash. Here are the details:

1. Overall – With all the hype about Apple’s intuitive interface, both products work fine right out of the box.

2. App Market User Interface – The Android Market, ‘Play’ is better designed than the clumsy iTunes and doesn’t require a PC download. I’m shocked that Apple hasn’t been shamed into upgrading iTunes. The site looks like it was developed by someone at Comcast (think about how poorly the search function works on your cable lineup.) If you download your apps directly with your phone, both work fine.

3. App Selection – Apple wins hands down on the selection of apps on their market place. Almost all developers develop on Apple first. If you are a tech junkie like me, Android will frustrate you.

4. Speech Recognition – Siri vs. Vlingo: virtual tie although Vlingo uses more battery power. With Vlingo’s recent acquisition by Nuance, look for Vlingo to get huge lift out of Nuance’s market leading Dragon Speech recognition offering. (not to mention the elimination of the ever-distracting litigious Nuance nuisance.)

5. Battery Life – The iPhone wins hands down on battery management but that’s only because it operates in 3G. The Thunderbolt battery life improves dramatically if you shut off 4G but that’s probably why you bought it.

6. Cost of Apps – Paid apps on iPhone vs. free on Android: it’s little overwhelming how much Apple stirs you to paid apps – not so on Android. The trade-off is that free apps can hog battery life by serving you untargeted advertisements “if the product is free, you are the product.” Love, Zuck.

7. Security – The edge goes to Apple who does a better job of screening apps before putting them on the market…although recent bad news in that area proves that Apple isn’t infallible.

The products are very comparable. If you want speed, go Android which is the only place you can get 4G. If you want battery life, go iPhone 4S. If you want one that will survive a brief swim in your commode, you are out of luck. From a privacy perspective, both companies scare the heck out of me (a lot more than Facebook does) because of the personal information they are gathering on all of us. When mobile payments become the norm, they’ll know everything you’ve purchased (in addition to already knowing everyone you know, everyplace you go and everything you do). George Orwell would have freaked out.

Tim O’Loughlin

Eastward Capital Partners

432 Cherry Street

West Newton, MA 02465

o: (617) 762-3611

c: (617) 947-6272

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Eastward Capital Partners – providing $1 – 10 million venture debt, growth capital and equipment financing to venture-backed, emerging growth companies since 1994. We also provide expansion capital to non venture backed companies.


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venture debt firm providing growth capital for emerging growth companies


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Tim O’Loughlin

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