Virgin Mobile's LG Optimus V is selling like hotcakes right now (it's out of stock just about everywhere), and with good reason: It runs Android 2.2, requires no contract, and costs as little as $25 per month--a price that includes anytime voice minutes and unlimited data.
The only drawback? Despite the presence of Android 2.2, which offers native support for tethering (i.e., using the phone as a mobile Wi-Fi hot spot), the Optimus V comes with the feature disabled.
Thankfully, there's a very easy workaround, one that requires no rooting and no expense. All you need is a free app called Quick Settings, which is available from Android Market.
When you run the app, you'll see a list of settings: brightness, Ringer, Volume control, Wi-Fi, and so on. Here's how to add Wi-Fi hot spot to that list:
- Press your phone's Menu button, then tap Customize.
- Scroll down under Hidden Settings until you see Wi-Fi hot spot, then tap and drag it up to the Visible Settings section.
- Tap the Back button to return to the main screen.
- Now you'll see the Wi-Fi hot spot option. Tap the Off button to turn it on.
That's all there is to it! Now your Optimus V is a mobile hot spot. When you're done, just tap On to toggle the feature off again. (You'll need to manually turn on Wi-Fi again as well.) I've tested this several times, and it works beautifully.
The caveat, of course, is that because Virgin Mobile doesn't support tethering, there's the potential for blowback (though I think it's very unlikely). Thus, use this tip at your own risk.
Now if we could just do something about the Optimus V's lack of Flash support...