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More LG Optimus Tips

Here's a few tips I recently learned regarding my Windows Phone.

  • You can make your Windows Phone appear in Windows Explorer and access it as though it were a USB drive (instructions).  I did this, nothing special here, you'll be able to see the images/music/video on the phone.  Nothing to see here, keep moving on...
  • It's possible to enable your Windows Phone for USB tethering as a modem (instructions).  I haven't done this.  I'm sure it's not "officially" supported and by doing this you may be violating whatever agreement you have with your mobile carrier (e.g. AT&T, T-Mobile, etc).  If you're seriously in need of wireless connectivity for your laptop then I'd suggest you instead take a look at the AT&T's Mifi 2372.
  • If you're like me and are using the Windows Phone from PDC10 then you'll need to change the number that is dialed for voicemail.  You can do this under Phone -> Call Settings -> Voicemail Number.  If you're on AT&T then the number you should put in there is your mobile number.  This is a totally obvious solution that took me way to long to figure out.
  • The January update for Windows Phone 7 is supposed to be massive.  I'm so happy that the carriers aren't involved in distributing updates, otherwise I'd probably have to wait until June of next year.

Windows Phone 7 just keeps getting better and better.  It will be interesting to see what kind of ads Microsoft chooses to run during the Super Bowl.

tags: WP7 | LG Optimus

Review: LG Optimus from PDC10

I recently had a friend ask what I thought of the LG Optimus that was handed out at PDC10.  I feel like I'm in a good position to have an opinion on it, as I've been using it as my personal phone for the last 2 weeks, rather than just leaving it in the box.

First of let me say that this is a "solid" phone.  It doesn't feel light-weight or cheap.  As far as look and feel, this phone holds it's own when compared against the iPhone 4 (I can say that because I currently carry and use both).  The LG Optimus has a much better feel than the other LG carried by AT&T (that one has a slideout keyboard).  When contrasted with the HTC Surround, the LG Optimus is thinner and feels better built.

I’ve put this phone in the hands of multiple managers in at least 3 different AT&T stores.  Each of them has said the LG Optimus is their favorite Windows Phone 7 device, even when compared against the Samsung Focus.  Why? because of the form factor and how solid it feels.  I should mention that each of these managers also use an iPhone 4 as their personal device.

When I first got my Windows Phone I took my SIM card from my iPhone 4 and slid it into the LG.  It took some time to get the position just right (see photo).  I still need to pick up a micro-SIM adapter from Amazon.  The voice and SMS messaging worked right out of the gate.  I needed to configure the APN settings in order to get data to work (blogged about here).  After using the phone for 10 days I realized that I couldn't send/receive MMS messages (think pix and video messaging).  That's when I started visiting all the different AT&T stores.

At the last store which I visited, they swapped in multiple SIM cards and ultimately verified that I could send/receive MMS on the store's Samsung Focus, but not on my LG Optimus.  I was told this isn’t that uncommon with international phones purchased overseas and brought over here.  I was further told that it's something to do with AT&T’s network and the phone not being built/tested for it.  Really?  Everything else was working fine: SMS, data, voice, just not MMS.  Because of this last fact I stopped using the LG as my personal device and switched back to the iPhone 4.  This was last Saturday.

Yesterday I took the liberty to tweet my frustrations.  I thought I was polite and cordial about the whole matter, but honestly I was fumming inside.

Twitter is amazing.  Earlier today I got a response to my tweet with a link which showed others experiencing my same problem.

The instructions were a little scary, but I went through the steps below and now MMS messaging works on the LG Optimus which I got from PDC10.  Note that you're using a built-in LG app to adjust these settings.

  1. Dial ##634# (this will cause a MFG app to appear in your app list)
  2. Launch the MFG app (password is 277634#*#)
  3. Select "7. Engineer Menu"
  4. Select "6. Other Setting"
  5. Select "Set network profiles"
  6. Select "_PROV_ATT_US_310_410.xml" from the list of available profiles

That's it, once I did this I could send/receive MMS messages.  My phone is now complete and works for everything (voice, data, SMS, MMS).  Should I need to reset my device to the factory settings then I'll need to go through these instructions again.

I'm so happy.  Don't get me wrong, there's things with the OS that need a ton of work.  For example the camera takes pictures of a quality similar to my Droid and not nearly as good as my iPhone 4, and the browser is not nearly as sharp as the browser on the iPhone 4. The team has a big list of stuff to be working on, and I'm good with that.  I'm happy with this initial release, and I'm confident the updates will flow at a pace that pleases me.

If you were at PDC10 and got one of these devices then I challenge you to not leave it in the box but instead use it.  Be fair though, and try it out for at least 2 weeks.  I don't believe you can adequately provide feedback on Windows Phone 7 without using it for at least that long.  The LG Optimus is a simple and yet beautiful device that complements the simplicity of the Metro and other concepts in Windows Phone 7.  Hopefully it will come to AT&T pretty soon so other people can enjoy it.

tags: WP7 | PDC10 | LG Optimus

Setting up WP7 from PDC10 for AT&T

Last week at PDC10 I was one of the many developers who walked away with a brand new LG Optimus (LG-E900).  Yeah, I finally got my Windows Phone 7!  Since then this phone has taken on the following roles:

  1. Used as a developer phone
  2. Used by my wife for her personal phone
  3. Used by myself as a personal phone
  4. Back to being a developer device
  5. Now sharing role of personal phone with iPhone 4 (swapping sims)

As you can guess I've had to reset the phone multiple times.  You can do that by going to Settings > about > reset your phone.

If you plug in a SIM card you'll quickly notice that data isn't working unless you're on WIFI.  In order to get data to work on your phone you'll need to manually configure your APN setting.  To do this, go to Settings > cellular > add apn.  You'll then enter the following information:

  • APN:  wap.cingular
  • Username:
  • Password:  CINGULAR1

Thanks to Ryan Cain for originally digging up this information. 

tags: WP7 | PDC10 | LG Optimus