LG Optimus V Review [On the Go Android!]

April 14, 2011
24

Before we begin, let me direct you back to a review I conducted some months ago on a very similar telephone by the name of LG Optimus U. This is essentially the same piece of hardware with a slightly different set of apps, costing a different price and having a different carrier. Comparing the two would be an exercise in futility because this isn't the sort of phone you decide on first, then figure out what carrier you want later. This is the kind of phone you find while you're shopping for a new phone on a carrier you trust. Who would buy such a phone? What uses are there for such a phone as this? Would I use this phone? Let's talk.

Let's take a quick peek at our unboxing/hands-on with this device in a video that would make Steven Spielberg and David Fincher weep with joy. Unboxing! The greatest epic:

Why and What

Lets continue on by noting how many apps this device comes loaded with - 34. That's the next best thing to none. I challenge you to find a phone that comes with less that's carried by a group that isn't a Nexus S, and you know what I mean. It's refreshing to see a group like Virgin Mobile releasing a phone like this with as few apps on it as it does. That said, lets discuss what this phone is for.

This phone comes in a box that's meant to be placed on a shelf or hung on a metal bar like a Star Wars figure. It's made to sit at Target next to the phones that are out on display looks magnificently pretty and absolutely simple to use. There's about a million billion other products that use this same tactic, but not very many that use it in the same way. There's a brand in Japan that uses this tactic, a clothing brand called Bape - you can find this brand in LA and New York as well - they do the same thing with $400 shoes. Because the product is in a simple plastic and cardboard case, the price becomes irrelevant.

Who and Where

The LG Optimus V is an Android phone that you purchase from a store, open the box, and activate on your own time with Virgin Mobile. It's extremely simple and quick to do this. Once you've got the phone activated, you've got a full Android experience, Google's Android Market, Android 2.2 Froyo (nearly the newest version of the OS,) and a generous camera for the price that the phone and its data plan add up to.

Photo Example

Video Example

As for specific bits beyond photo and video quality I'd be looking for in any Android phone, first of all, yes, you can install non-Market apps. This means you can buy apps from sources other than the Android Market and install them no problem. Next, you're able to use GPS for maps, call and text, and have the browser-based Android Market send apps to the handset - all of these should basically be given on an Android phone, so if they're not there, I'll pretty much call the phone DOA. This one's good on those bits. The only thing I'm seeing missing here that I'd definitely have trouble living without at this point is the option to turn the handset into a portable hotspot for internet that I can access via my laptop. I need it! V doesn't have it.

But you can download apps, and the phone runs the very current Android 2.2 Froyo mobile OS. This means that this device can run most of the apps on the market (no one device can run ALL of them,) and run them relatively well. There is a bit of a downfall in this phone in that it's not made for high-powered games that require things like dual-core processors. This should be recognized by you, the consumer, before you purchase, or you'll be sorely disappointed. If you understand that this phone isn't the most powerful unit on the market and use it for apps and games that don't expect it to flip out for you, you'll be good.

Wrap-Up and Verdict

The cheapest plan you can get this phone on is $25 a month - the only thing this limits you on is how long you can talk. Text messaging and data (how much you can download, upload, browse the web) is unlimited. This is an amazing deal, if you ask me, especially if you just want an email/music box in your pocket. Pandora and email everywhere you go, unlimited for $25 a month! This is super awesome.

Then there's the reasons you wouldn't get it: you want a bigger Android phone. That's it. If you need a phone and want one that'll give you data, but you don't care how big the screen is or how powerful the games you want to play are - this is definitely the little man for you.


Recent Stories

  • liltigerroc2040@yahoo.com

    I got this phone for free thx #virginmobile

    • http://androidcommunity.com/ Chris Burns

      gg

    • http://androidcommunity.com/ Chris Burns

      gg

  • AChin

    I own one and love it!

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_O4CN72W3TH7GSYDGW5LKF7IBQA Dogan Eskiyoruk

    This seems like a great little phone. Would love to try it out.

  • Chessnoid

    Hi,
    Just want to let you know you can turn your optimus v into a hotspot and tether your laptop.
    http://www.totalnoid.com/2011/03/24/virgin-mobile-lg-optimus-v-tethering-and-wifi-hotspots-video/comment-page-1/
    Hope that helps you have a nice all in one complete phone now. Cheers!

  • Steve Polycronopolis

    you can download “Quick Settings” from the market to access the wi-fi hotspot settings on your phone. Virgin just hid them. Then you can use it as a wi-fi hotspot for free!

  • ji3

    I’ve used the Quick Settings app for a hotspot and it works wonderfully. I love this phone and my only complaint is that the battery is not really stellar. Honestly, though, that is a small concession to make for such a great phone!

  • Renaldo

    You should take off the “Virgin Mobile Canada” tag — this phone isn’t.

  • http://www.facebook.com/lrios Louis Rios

    I confirm that the Quick Settings app allows you to make the phone work as a hotspot. Plus, Quick Settings is just a nice app to have.

    I’ve had the phone about two weeks now and really like it. I’ve added JuiceDefender to improve the battery life. This works very well, although be aware it does usually turn off the mobile data connection when the phone is not in use. If you have “push” email or other apps that rely on push, it will affect these, but so far it’s a tradeoff I’m willing to make. $25/month for 300 minutes and unlimited data is perfect for me.

  • http://www.facebook.com/lrios Louis Rios

    I confirm that the Quick Settings app allows you to make the phone work as a hotspot. Plus, Quick Settings is just a nice app to have.

    I’ve had the phone about two weeks now and really like it. I’ve added JuiceDefender to improve the battery life. This works very well, although be aware it does usually turn off the mobile data connection when the phone is not in use. If you have “push” email or other apps that rely on push, it will affect these, but so far it’s a tradeoff I’m willing to make. $25/month for 300 minutes and unlimited data is perfect for me.

    • Chessnoid

      I agree with Loius Rios, the juice defender will increase your battery life in between charges. Also, if you want to use wifi instead of data, i recommend turning on the airport mode. With the quick settings widget, you can toggle all these functions on and off.

      Cheers!

    • Chessnoid

      I agree with Loius Rios, the juice defender will increase your battery life in between charges. Also, if you want to use wifi instead of data, i recommend turning on the airport mode. With the quick settings widget, you can toggle all these functions on and off.

      Cheers!

    • Anonymous

      AN Optimus 2X review here if you’re interested! (http://www.advancedtechnologykorea.com/?p=3957)

  • Juandeloxley

    I had this phone for less than a week before returning it.
    I had to charge the battery every night.
    I couldn’t send international text messages.
    When I went to go cancel my service, I was told I’d not be getting a refund for any of the money I’d put onto the account.
    Terrible phone.
    Terrible customer service
    Terrible network coverage.

    Bad experience.

  • rc

    i bought this phone today and cannot seem to get on the internet, its been like 4 hours now and cant get on, the text works and the phone works but the internet does does anyone know what i can do? or does it take time to get it going?

    • Chessnoid

      Hey RC,
      it may just be a matter of turning on the wireless settings. Try this. Hit the hard left corner key (menu button) first which will pop up a menu. Then go:
      Menu>settings>wireless & networks> then scroll down and adjust settings accordingly. Hope that helps. I have some virgin mobile blog posts for future reference:

      http://www.totalnoid.com/category/cell-phones/

      Cheers!

  • khloe

    I’ve had the phone about a month now and I love it. There are some cons such as contact info disappearing randomly and the poor battery life, but reading the reviews before I purchased the phone I learned how to save my battery in between charges. The best way to conserve battery life is to check the applications and making sure none of them are running when you do not want them to. Overall I love this phone and recommend it to those willing to be patient and learn how to use the phone to their advantage.

  • Anonymous

    I’ve had this phone for less than a week & the only problem I have is it does not save my contacts info.  It says “contact saved” but it doesn’t go into the list.  What to do.  It only worked the first day.  Can contacts be saved in a different program or app?  any help would be appreciated.

    • David Johnson

      Try saving your contacts online in your Gmail contact list. I don’t have the same problem with contacts saving, but since this phone isn’t compatible with the contact vault service, I had to re-enter all my contacts by hand. Doing so online with a keyboard proved to be much faster than tapping them in on the phone. They sync up with my phone contact list right away.

  • Adanv619

    i was wondering if you guys can help me with my optimus it keeps freeezing and stalling idk what it can be i have alot of memory and i dont have alot of apps?