Are they retrofitting Thunderbolts as we speak?

Cory Streater

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Presumably there have been 10's of thousands of TB's, sitting inside a warehouse boxed up, and ready for sale for at least a few weeks now, especially since there was a pretty strong belief that the TB was going on sale back in Mid February. I kind of doubt they announce and then start pumping these off the assembly line on that day.

So, I ask, if there have been hardware and/or firmware problems, have they had to open each and every box, make the necessary mods (whether software or hardware) and then repackage them again, or do they pull the current inventory and replace them with newer versions, with the idea that the old ones will be retrofit at a later date? Does it matter to you whether or not you get a device that came directly off the production line with no retrofits after the fact?

I'm not sure if there's a giant robot that does all this or not, but it seems like it would be a fairly labor intensive process. If anyones seen that show "How It's Made" you'll know what I'm saying when I say I wish they'd do an episode on the making of the TB. Regardless I can see how the impact of having to do all of these various things would cause unknown delays and their ability to officially committ to specific dates.
 

spooluptheFTL

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There are rumors at androidforums.com that we may see a spec change, hinting at the battery. It comes from someone who is somewhat tight with bmx, for whatever that's worth. edit: Link

If that's the case, they just need to open the box and replace the battery, because if I'm not mistaken the battery is packed separately. That wouldn't bother me.
 
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itsdollar

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Good topic. Thanks for putting doubt in my head about grabbing one from the first batch :). J/K but I do wonder as well how they are going to update if it can't be done OTA. I will just return exchange if I think I need a new better device.
 
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iLLusive

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From my limited understanding just like anything they do "Small" set number of units per run. Those units are tested by in house workers and then adjustments are made. So back when the phone was launched they probably had multiple areas doing their thing (1) Phone housing (2) Software (3) Hardware (4) Networking (5) Inner housing (6) Battery / Charging system (7) Accessories

Once they get working solid prototype they file the FCC claims for rights and phone specs to be approved for networks. They then roll out I would guess small number like 100 units and try their best to break functionality of the phone by any means possible. So with that being said if there was truly a Skype issue with way the new "Baked" in features work. Most likely would be all these warehoused units with need for upgrade or fix in the OS. It really depends on how they warehouse the unit and for all we know they might not even have produced the retail version they would of still been testing a Alpha / Beta run of the phone and caught these issues before it went into full production.

As you said though it would be cool to see how many stages and what step in that process they found issues, but everything we know of issues in my opinion is still hearsay. Do you really think Endgadget is going to get a real retail unit and test battery life to give huge negative selling point right before they release the phone forsale? Highly unlikely that would be in their best interest and I would guess it is one the first things they test by turning on 10-25 App's and draining the battery and seeing how in the "Real World" the battery life of the phone will be.
 

Sploinkin

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You're up early Cory.

If it is just a battery I'd be fine with an open box. If it is something else, I'd want them to take them back and offer those ones as refurbs while sending out factory fresh ones for original purchase.
 

thedeceiver

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There are rumors at androidforums.com that we may see a spec change, hinting at the battery. It comes from someone who is somewhat tight with bmx, for whatever that's worth. edit: Link

If that's the case, they just need to open the box and replace the battery, because if I'm not mistaken the battery is packed separately. That wouldn't bother me.

A larger battery would make sense but if they have to re-open those sealed boxes, then take out old battery and insert new battery on the scale that they would need... I don't see how they would be able to launch the phone next week.
 

Hobbessti

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Well they could just ship the batteries with the phones to the stores and have the reps replace them as the phone is sold??? just a thought, still have not had my morning Coffee.....
 
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Noloc0209

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If they did switch batteries. Wouldn't the box have the battery specs on the back?? Not sure but if so would that mean they change the boxs too???
 

FrankXS

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There are rumors at androidforums.com that we may see a spec change, hinting at the battery. It comes from someone who is somewhat tight with bmx, for whatever that's worth. edit: Link

If that's the case, they just need to open the box and replace the battery, because if I'm not mistaken the battery is packed separately. That wouldn't bother me.
You don't really need to open the box and replace the battery, you just need to rewrite the online specs to accomodate for less battery life.

-Frank
 

DolfanCole

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A larger battery would make sense but if they have to re-open those sealed boxes, then take out old battery and insert new battery on the scale that they would need... I don't see how they would be able to launch the phone next week.

They could just have the battery as an add-on -- meaning it's external to the box that Verizon/Best Buy would just give you. That'd mean you'd have two batteries and more expense for Verizon, but that might also help win back customers who have frowned upon this entire ordeal.
 

spooluptheFTL

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A larger battery would make sense but if they have to re-open those sealed boxes, then take out old battery and insert new battery on the scale that they would need... I don't see how they would be able to launch the phone next week.

But if you assume they started pulling and replacing batteries during the start of the delay rumors (around the week of the 10th), almost a month would be plenty of time.

This is all speculation of speculation, of course. :p
 

ndreher

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They could just have the battery as an add-on -- meaning it's external to the box that Verizon/Best Buy would just give you. That'd mean you'd have two batteries and more expense for Verizon, but that might also help win back customers who have frowned upon this entire ordeal.
I agree if its a battery or firmware issue I don't see why the reps just could not do it when they are selling the phone. It would be as simple as telling the Customer "Hey I need to perform an update on the phone to ensure it is running at its peak performance, we also are giving you a higher capacity battery to ensure you get the battery life you expect."

I would be totally cool with that conversation...
 

thedeceiver

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They could just have the battery as an add-on -- meaning it's external to the box that Verizon/Best Buy would just give you. That'd mean you'd have two batteries and more expense for Verizon, but that might also help win back customers who have frowned upon this entire ordeal.

It is possible... kind of like what they do when you get a replacement phone. But, I would think it unlikely. The batteries being shipped separately could cause problems logistically (what if not enough batteries come in for the phone? Or some get lost? etc.).

It would seem more likely that they pop open the box, flash the phone with the new firmware, and put a new battery in the box. The HTC Distribution centers could potentially do that but without knowing their capabilities, it's hard to say.
 

ndreher

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It is possible... kind of like what they do when you get a replacement phone. But, I would think it unlikely. The batteries being shipped separately could cause problems logistically (what if not enough batteries come in for the phone? Or some get lost? etc.).

It would seem more likely that they pop open the box, flash the phone with the new firmware, and put a new battery in the box. The HTC Distribution centers could potentially do that but without knowing their capabilities, it's hard to say.
I would think the DC workers would be better at picking and packing orders than they would be at replacing batteries. Most likely they would have to bring in a 3rd party to complete the task....
 

upz3

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Or they let the stores themselves do the battery swap. I don't care for the rumor that it's a battery or anything else right now because it's just going to make more of the people here pissed and we don't need to see that on the boards more than it is showcases now.
 

thedeceiver

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I would think the DC workers would be better at picking and packing orders than they would be at replacing batteries. Most likely they would have to bring in a 3rd party to complete the task....

Yes, the ability for the DC to do it is based on my assumption that the center would have those capabilities onsite and thus appropriate training.

Either way, I'd agree that if they are putting a new phone in the box that I don't see how this phone happens in the time frame people are assuming (9 days).

I'll reiterate my April call.
 

Bwangster12

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We don't know when they started "retrofitting" these phones. We've read the rumors on the net, but the could have been working on these issues for weeks.
 

Cory Streater

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You're up early Cory.

This question jolted me from a deep sleep at 4AM this morning lol. J/K.

Great feedback so far guys. Handing out new batteries at the store, I could see, but I'm not so sure about VZW store employees flashing firmware. If the only thing required was a firmware update, it wouldn't be uncommon to pull the phone out of the box, activate it, and then be notified that an OTA update is available. In fact, I can't recall an Android phone I've bought, where that didn't happen. That's why I'm more inclined to either think it's under the hood hardware changes or some other software tweaks they are still engineering. If it's the latter, I hope it's not a solution that robs Peter (like performance or color temperature) to pay Paul (battery consumption). But I digress. As insane as I am about things like dust under my screen - and the like - I guess that's what got me started thinking about how all this plays itself out.

Oh and @Dollar. Don't let anything I say discourage you! Every time - prior to a phone hitting the market - I say "I will never be an early adopter again! I shall be patient and buy it after it's been out a few months." And each and every time, I'm always the first person peeking through Vetizon's window on launch day.
 

mlpjunior

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They could just have the battery as an add-on -- meaning it's external to the box that Verizon/Best Buy would just give you. That'd mean you'd have two batteries and more expense for Verizon, but that might also help win back customers who have frowned upon this entire ordeal.

Some of you may remember that Motorola did this with the original Q after there were widespread battery life complaints. They started throwing in an extended battery & battery door with every device.
 

itsdollar

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This question jolted me from a deep sleep at 4AM this morning lol. J/K.

Great feedback so far guys. Handing out new batteries at the store, I could see, but I'm not so sure about VZW store employees flashing firmware. If the only thing required was a firmware update, it wouldn't be uncommon to pull the phone out of the box, activate it, and then be notified that an OTA update is available. In fact, I can't recall an Android phone I've bought, where that didn't happen. That's why I'm more inclined to either think it's under the hood hardware changes or some other software tweaks they are still engineering. If it's the latter, I hope it's not a solution that robs Peter (like performance or color temperature) to pay Paul (battery consumption). But I digress. As insane as I am about things like dust under my screen - and the like - I guess that's what got me started thinking about how all this plays itself out.

Oh and @Dollar. Don't let anything I say discourage you! Every time - prior to a phone hitting the market - I say "I will never be an early adopter again! I shall be patient and buy it after it's been out a few months." And each and every time, I'm always the first person peeking through Vetizon's window on launch day.


I was kidding. I will have that phone day 1.:cool:
 

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