The Virgin Mobile LG Optimus V Model VM670 is a mid-grade smartphone that is offered through the Sprint-owned network, Virgin Mobile.
I personally bought this phone, primarily for its ability to download apps, in particular the one offered by my retail stock broker, OptionsXpress.
Previously, I owned the “dumbphone,” LG Rumor Touch, which did not have this capability.
Most phones today grant you access to social media and email, if you’re willing to pay the extra cost of internet access to your network provider. Virgin Mobile, however, offers flat rates of $35, $45 and $55 before tax and e911 fees, which only add a couple of dollars to the monthly bill. These rates are offered through their Beyond Talk plans, which increasingly feature Android smartphones as an option for purchase. I have what would be the $45 plan, but I was with Virgin mobile before a $5 price hike was applied to each plan, so I’ve received the “preferred customer” treatment, if you will. My time as a Virgin Mobile customer has seen me switch plans from cheapest to most expensive and then settling in the middle. The only difference between any of the offered plans is the amount of anytime minutes allotted, data and messaging are unlimited, no matter which plan you choose. The $35 plan gives you 300 minutes, the $45 plan gives you 1200 minutes, and the $55 plan gives you unlimited anytime minutes, as well as the usual unlimited data and messaging.
The LG Optimus V Model VM670 has dropped nearly $100 in price since I bought it at $200. It’s now being sold for $103.99 as part of a 20% off deal, featured on one other phone offered with the Beyond Talk plans. You will get a lot of use out of this phone. It comes with a 3.2 megapixel camera and built-in Google Navigation. It also has the ability to upload pictures directly to your social media accounts. My favorite feature of this phone is Swype, a texting keyboard that allows you to type much faster by “swyping” your finger(s) across the keyboards in one continuous motion to form words. If you need to type the same letter twice in a row, you simply swipe your finger across that same letter left to right twice. The full Android Market on the Android 2.2 Operating System is also a very welcome feature, as there are devices out there that only offer a lite version of the Android Market. Another exciting feature is the ability to charge the phone using a USB port. The charger with which the phone ships has an adapter into which the USB is input to the adapter which plugs into the wall, but this ability makes it easy to keep your charger on you anytime your battery is low, knowing that there is a USB port in a friend’s car or computer available.
The LG Optimus V also ships with a 2GB SD card for out-of-phone storage of memory. It will usually be inside of your phone, but it helps to move any apps over to the SD card as the phone itself doesn’t have nearly that capacity.
This phone is basically a computer in your hand and proves that you don’t need an iPhone! Case and point: I’ve seen more than a page’s worth of imitation Siri apps for free on the Android Market.
Now that I feel I just sold you one of these, let me tell you what attributes you won’t like about this phone. We’ll start with its battery life. I’ve taken it as the cost of using a smartphone, but this phone will stay charged for two, maybe three days, tops. It also freezes every once in a while, and some notifications don’t disappear from the notification bar without restarting the phone. The most common instance of this in my experience is when uploading pictures directly from the phone to Facebook. Often, it will only partially finish the upload, causing me to restart the phone. Other times, the notification telling me that the phone is busy uploading a photo to facebook won’t go away. Every once in a while, I’m told that I was called or someone sent me a text message to which I never replied. When this happens, I don’t see a missed call, nor do I see any new text from that person. On occasion, I’ve noticed receiving a voicemail without my phone ringing, with the volume up, yet no notification that I just missed a call.
If you’re picky, don’t get this phone because it may seriously irritate you. But if you appreciate things for what they are and the option to switch between plans without penalty, under no contract, this is definitely a phone for you.