Rated 4.2 out of 5 based off 135 ratings

Brand LG
Model Name Thrive
Operating System Google_android
Cellular Technology 3G
Memory Storage Capacity 32 GB
Connectivity Technology USB
Color Silver
Wireless network technology GSM
Connector Type 3.5mm Jack
Form Factor Smartphone
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  • 3.2 MP camera with 4x zoom
  • Memory expansion via microSD card slot with support for optional cards up to 32 GB
  • Android 2.2 operating system
  • Mobile Email with Gmail, POP3/IMAP, and MS Exchange support
  • What's in the Box: LG Thrive smartphone, battery, USB cable, wall charger, CD with user manual and Flash tutorial, Quick Start guide


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LG Thrive Prepaid Android GoPhone (AT&T)

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Product description

This affordable smartphone is part of LG's entry-level Optimus One series. Features are par for Android smartphones, including 3G data, turn-by-turn GPS navigation, 3-megapixel camera, video capture, 3.5mm audio jack, and memory card slot.


The LG Thrive smartphone is the perfect balance of functionality and affordability, with the flexibility of a prepaid plan. It feature whip-fast processing on the Android 2.2 platform, PC-like browsing, and access to email, contacts, and calendar that sync with your web accounts and PC. The LG Thrive lets you have your world, your way.

Featuring Android 2.2 on the flexibility of a prepaid plan. View larger

Boost your data connection with WiFi and connect free to thosuands of AT&T WiFi HotSpots nationwide or share your mobile broadband connection with up to 5 other devices by creating a password-protected personal hotspot. The Thrive gives you the power you need to run the most demanding Android applications and games available on Android Market. Stay in the know with quick access to social networking with Facebook and Twitter and shoot sharp photos and video with Thrive’s 3.2 megapixel camera--which you can easily upload to Picasa or YouTube.

The LG Thrive operates on AT&T's Tri-Band UMTS/HSDPA 7.2Mbps and Quad-Band EDGE networks. Its 600MHz application processor has the power you need to multitask on the 3.2" HVGA full touchscreen. Enjoy PC-like web browsing with the built-in WebKit 2.3-based browser. Read your work email with Gmail, POP3/IMAP, and MS Exchange support, and get more done with ThinkFree Office which lets you view and edit Microsoft Office files and attachments.

With the 3.2" full touchscreen, enjoy PC-like web browsing, access Gmail, and get more done with ThinkFree Office. View larger

Keep in touch with social networking like Facebook and Twitter, or just entertain yourself with preloaded AT&T apps such as AT&T Radio, AT&T Navigator, AT&T U-verse Live TV, AT&T FamilyMap, YPmobile, and more.

Enabled for use on AT&T's lightning quick HSPDA 3G network, you'll be able to easily access the Internet as well as quickly download video, music, and more. Additionally, with AT&T's 3G network, you can make a call while simultaneously receiving picture/text messages and e-mail or viewing Web pages. This GPS-enabled phone can access the AT&T Navigator service for turn-by-turn directions.

Google Integration

The Thrive has voice commands and speech-to-text capability, with compatibility for Google Voice Actions. It has integrated Google account syncing for compatible Google apps such as Contacts, Gmail, Gtalk, Google Calendar, Picasa and Android Market.

Vital Statistics

The LG Thrive weighs 3.2 ounces and measures 4.47 x 2.32 x 0.53 inches. Its 1500 mAh lithium-ion battery is rated at up to 7.5 hours of talk time, and up to 20 days of standby time. It runs on the 850/900/1800/1900 MHz GSM/GPRS/EDGE frequencies as well as AT&T's 3G UMTS 850/1800/2100 HSDPA network.

What's in the Box

LG Thrive smartphone, battery, USB cable, wall charger, CD with user manual and Flash tutorial, quick start guide.


  • 3.2-megapixel camera with 4x zoom
  • Up to 2 hours of live video capture and playback


  • Music player compatible with MP3, AAC, AAC+, AAC+v2, WMA, MIDI, WAV, AMR formats
  • AT&T Mobile Music and streaming AT&T Radio
  • Built-in FM Radio
  • U-verse Live TV to watch live, on-demand and downloadable TV shows on your phone


  • Text Messaging and Instant Messaging (IM) via Google Talk
  • Mobile Email with Gmail, POP3/IMAP, and MS Exchange support


  • 2 GB memory card installed
  • Memory expansion via microSD card slot with support for optional cards up to 32 GB


  • Custom ringtones with MP3 support
  • Ringback tones to have your friends hear your favorite song or funny phrase when they call you
  • Theme your phone with wallpapers, custom menus, icons, and more
  • Android Market with access to thousands of applications


  • Address book
  • Conference calling and call forwarding
  • ThinkFree Office to view and edit Microsoft Office files
  • Multitasking with simultaneous voice and data

More Features

  • 3G high-speed data and voice (7.2Mbps)
  • World phone with tri-band support
  • Bluetooth 2.1 wireless connectivity
  • Hands-free speakerphone
  • Voice dialing and voice commands

Android Operating System

The LG Thrive runs the Android operating system--OS 2.2 (aka Froyo)--which provides a faster overall Android experience as well as greater multitasking capabilities. You'll be able to receive notifications, listen to music, and even record GPS data without keeping the application open. And it features a plethora of new enhancements, including an improved onscreen QWERTY keyboard, full push corporate e-mail, and support for Adobe Flash Player 10.1 for access to the full Web. It also offers enhanced Exchange support, with Calendar syncing, Global Address Lookup, improved security, auto-discovery, and more.

With integrated Google technology, the LG Thrive brings one-touch access to the popular Google mobile services millions use every day, including Google Search by voice, Google Maps with Street View, GTalk instant messaging (with presence capabilities), YouTube, and Picasa. The LG Thrive also provides easy access to both personal and corporate e-mail, calendars, and contacts supported by Exchange Server and Gmail. And through Android Market, you'll get access to thousands of useful applications, widgets, and fun games to download and install on your phone, with many more apps being added every day.

AT&T GoPhone Service

AT&T's pay-as-you-go GoPhone plans are wireless plans made easy, simply pay in advance for what you need. No long-term contracts, credit checks, or surprise bills--just all the benefits of wireless, with no complications. In addition, AT&T's Rollover Balance feature lets you carry over your unused account balance when you purchase refill minutes before your balance expires.

Other great GoPhone features include no long distance or roaming fees across AT&T's national service area, the ability to track usage via text messages with an updated balance after each call, and the ability to refill your minutes 24-hours a day, 7-days a week. You can also choose to add international long distance for calling to over 50 countries (including Mexico landlines and Canada) for just $10 for 250 minutes. And you can cancel any time without penalty.

GoPhone Plan Options
  • $50 Monthly Unlimited Plan includes unlimited talk, text (both U.S. and internationally), and access to Internet data and web browsing (smartphone users must purchase a separate data package).
  • $25 Monthly Plan includes 250 minutes of talk time, unlimited text messages, and international texting at 25¢ per message. Data and mobile web browsing is charged per use, or you can buy a package.
  • $2 Unlimited Daily Talk & Text is a good plan for those who do not use their phone every day, and data packages can be added. It's charged ONLY on days when the phone is used to make or receive a voice call (including a call to voice mailbox), use IM, or send a text or picture/video/sound message. Data is charged per use, or via a package.
  • Per Minute enables you to make phone calls at just 10¢ a minute--perfect for those looking to use their phone very infrequently or for emergencies. You can also send texts at 20¢ per message (25¢ per international message), or choose a monthly package. Data is charged per use, or via a package.

Smartphone users can use any of these GoPhone plans, however, a smartphone require a data/web package to use data/web services. Pay-per-use data/web is not available on smartphone devices. Data packages for all GoPhone plan options (for mobile web access for e-mail, Facebook, Twitter, and more) include the following:

  • 500 MB for $25
  • 100 MB for $15
  • 10 MB for $5

    Data packages are good for 30 days, as long as your account balance is not expired. Standard rates apply if feature package is not renewed after 30 days.

    Learn more about AT&T GoPhone plans from this handy chart, plus check out AT&T's nationwide coverage map.

    See (AT&T's coverage map).
    How to Refill Your Account

    For your convenience 24/7, you can add money to your account in a variety of ways and in a variety of amounts.

    • With Rollover Balance, if you refill your account before your balance expires, you keep your unused balance.
    • Purchase a refill card at any AT&T store and over 200,000 other retail locations in the U.S. Most refill cards will let you dial *888* to refill using the PIN number on the card.
    • Use a credit/debit card and visit att.com/mygophone to refill online. You can also set up Auto Refill and Text to Refill, which enables you to refill directly from your phone.

      To check on your current balance, dial*777# and press SEND to receive a text massage indicating your account balance and expiration date.

      AT&T GoPhone refill cards are available in these amounts:

      • $15 (30-day expiration)
      • $25 (90-day expiration)
      • $50 (90-day expiration)
      • $60 (90-day expiration)
      • $100 (1-year expiration)

Product Reviews:

4.0 out of 5 stars

A Great Phone for the Price
Reviewed in the United States ?? on June 15, 2011

Verified Purchase
UPDATE 3/30/14: Be aware that the original review below is quite old, and many of the tips are no longer valid. By today's standards, this phone is VERY outdated, and other phones like a Google Nexus would be highly preferable at a similar cost. AT&T has crippled their Pay-As-You-Go plans for people who want cheap data, as now it'll cost at least $30/month for cellular data (though you can still get decent deals on AT&T's network with smaller companies like AirVoice or H2O Wireless).

By default, AT&T has disabled installing apps from "unknown sources" (i.e. Amazon Appstore). Rumor has it that there's an Android OS 2.2.2 update being pushed out over the air for this phone which re-enables this feature. Unfortunately, I can't get my Thrive to check for updates at all. However, you CAN enable installing unknown source apps using a "secret menu". Just dial 3845#*506# and a settings menu will appear. Scroll down and tap "Unknow Sources Test". Then check the "Unknown sources" box on the screen that pops up. Amazon Appstore should work as intended now!

First things first: this is no $500-600 flagship phone. But for under two hundred bucks, it's an excellent value, and can do almost anything that any of the fancy smartphones can do. And for someone who doesn't use many voice minutes, and can ration 3G data by taking advantage of Wi-Fi, the monthly fees can be incredibly low when compared to a smartphone contract.

* Using the 10-cent per minute plan, this can give you a smartphone for as little as $8.33/month (that is, if you use fewer than 33 voice minutes & less than 10MB of 3G data every month). If you find yourself low on data, you can spend twenty-five bucks to add 500MB (up to a max of 1500MB) that will roll over every month that you continue purchasing a data package. Voice minutes can also be added in 150 to 1000 minute increments at any time.
* If you port your old number or sign up for a new number using Google Voice, you can get free text messaging without paying a monthly texting fee to AT&T (texts will come to your phone through your data plan or Wi-Fi). Be aware that you'll want to send & receive texts through the Google Voice app (found in the Android Marketplace), and not the stock Messaging app. Also, once you link your Thrive to your Google Voice account, you'll want to turn OFF the "Receive text messages on this phone" setting for the Thrive (if you turn this setting ON, every time you receive a text, you'll get a free Google Voice text PLUS a regular SMS text that will cost you 20-cents a pop).
* Ability to run almost any app in the Android App Store.
* Pretty decent battery life (for an Android phone). I charge my Thrive while I'm asleep. Unplug in the morning, use it all day, and plug it in to charge when I go to bed at the end of the night.
* Small size makes it extremely pocketable. While the entire device is a bit bulkier, the screen is just a smidge smaller than the screen of an iPhone.
* Even though it's only 3.2MP, the camera takes some pretty clear shots.
* Like any other Android phone, you can upgrade the memory by buying a larger microSD card. I bought an ADATA 32GB class 4 microSDHC card, transferred all of my music to my Thrive, and ditched my iPod. (Looking through Internet forums, it appears that similar LG Optimus phones have been reported to have problems with SD cards 16GB or larger -- I have not had any problems on my device with this setup.)

* The screen is definitely not Gorilla Glass. I babied my phone, and had a couple fine scratches on the screen within 2 weeks. Invest in a screen protector.
* At 320x480, the screen resolution isn't as high-def as newer phones. However, it's still on par with any iPhone made before the iPhone 4.
* The fairly-slow 600MHz processor means that you won't be able to install Flash on this device for web browsing. I've also noticed slowdowns in some games, specifically the newer Angry Birds games.
* With only 150MB of on-board memory, you're very limited with the number of apps you can install. True, you can move some apps to SD, but even then, these apps will still eat up a certain amount of onboard memory. In less than a month, I've already found myself having to delete certain apps to find room for others.
* (FOUND A WORKAROUND FOR THIS! SEE UPDATE AT THE TOP OF THIS REVIEW!) AT&T has turned off the ability to load apps from anywhere but the Android Marketplace.
* AT&T tries to complicate the refill process for this phone. You CAN set up automatic refill of airtime and features like data, but to do it online, you have to use two different AT&T websites. At paygonline dot com, you can set up auto-renew on your data or text plan. At myprepaidrefill dot com, you can set up auto-refill on airtime. Also of note, buying feature packages at paygonline dot com deducts from your existing airtime balance; while feature packages at myprepaidrefill dot com must be purchased separately.
* Depending on where you live, you may have an E911 fee deducted from your airtime balance every month. Usually not too costly, but still a surprise. Search for "gophone e911" to see what you'll be paying for 911 service.
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33 people found this helpful

4.0 out of 5 stars

very nice phone for the price
Reviewed in the United States ?? on September 24, 2011

Verified Purchase
We often forget our phones at home so we decided to keep an emergency phone for the car. However, I didn't really care for the dumbphones often provided with prepaid pay-as-you-go plans. Neither did I want to be forced to spend upwards of $30/month for a month-to-month prepaid plan just to get a smartphone. The LG Thrive gives me the best of both worlds. I get a relatively decent smartphone for under 200 bucks while keeping annual costs fairly low.

1. Hardware
The LG Thrive is nowhere near top of the line and it shows. I'm using an iPhone 4 as my primary phone so the low pixel density (~180ppi vs ~330ppi on iPhone 4), lack of camera flash, lack of front-facing camera, etc are things that are quite noticeable. That said, the iPhone 4 costs a minimum of $649 unlocked for the 16GB version so I can't really fault the Thrive for not having better hardware. What I do find most frustrating is the tiny internal memory. The device has 512MB flash memory but only ~150MB of that is useable (the rest is used by the firmware, etc). 150MB is really just too small by today's standards and even if you install your apps on the SD card, a lot of apps still leave a footprint on phone memory so it's easy to find yourself filling up the internal memory quickly. Increasing the internal memory by just 512MB would be a big help without increasing costs too much. Heck, I'd much rather have bigger internal memory with no microSD card included instead of the ~150MB internal memory + 2GB microSD card in the package. Aside from that gripe, I don't have any complaints about the hardware. I get as strong, if not stronger, signal on the Thrive as I do on my iPhone. Battery life was fairly decent - it's not as long as the iPhone 4 but it's comparable to the original iPhone. Performance-wise, you shouldn't notice any lag doing the basics - email, internet surfing, voice calls, text messaging. The Thrive is actually better than the original iPhone and the iPhone 3G in that regard. However, you do see noticeable slowdown in some apps (e.g. Netflix).

2. Operating System/Software
Coming from iOS, I'm actually liking Android quite a bit more. The Thrive comes with Android 2.2 Froyo which is an older version. While it does have some annoyances (e.g. copy/paste which should be much improved on later versions of Android) and doesn't quite have as many apps as iOS, I find that all the major apps I use are available and the ones that don't at least have alternatives. I've never bothered jailbreaking my iPhone and it's really nice that the Thrive provides easier access to the system without having to root. Sure, there are still some restrictions but it's a lot more open than iOS. Widgets are another thing I really like about Android. Widgets allow you to view weather, messages, calendar, etc right from your home screen. No need to go through the hassle of opening/switching apps.

3. Service/Plan
The cheapest options for a very low usage smartphone were T-Mobile and AT&T. I believe they're the only service providers which allow smartphones to be used on pay-as-you-go. Opted for AT&T (ergo LG Thrive instead of LG Optimus T) since they have better coverage where I work. It's a minimum of $100/yr (or $25/90 days) to keep the account active (with no lapse in service). That amounts to as little as $8.33/mo.

One nice thing with this phone (and other smartphones, particularly Android ones) is there are ways to leverage Wi-Fi connectivity to help minimize your phone bill. For example, using Google Voice for texting can make for big cost savings. AT&T's messaging feature packages are $5/200, $10/1000 and $20/unlimited with data feature packages at $5/10MB, $15/100MB and $25/500MB. With Google Voice, you can get free texting if you're within Wi-Fi range. Even if you're not, given the small amount of data text messages require, even the $5/10MB data package is sufficient for practically unlimited text messaging. If you're often within range of Wi-Fi, using Google Voice for calls could also help minimize usage (via GrooVe IP or similar 3rd party app - the official app doesn't support calls).

Overall, the LG Thrive is a very nice budget/starter Android smartphone and provides very good value for its price. For low usage, AT&T's plans are also quite affordable. However, if you're a big talker or need to use 3G data a lot, you might want to consider other options.
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One person found this helpful