How to Disable the Default Apps on the LG Optimus M

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Like many other Android phone manufacturers, LG includes its own branded applications on the smartphones it produces. The LG Optimus M, sold exclusively through MetroPCS, includes a number of preinstalled apps such as Boingo Wi-Fi, LG Home Launcher, Metro Navigator and others that you may not need -- especially if you intend to install aftermarket apps. However, disabling the Optimus M's default apps is not as simple as changing a configuration setting: you must root the phone temporarily and remove the apps manually.

  • USB data cable for the LG Optimus M

1 Connect the Optimus M

Connect the Optimus M to a computer with the phone's USB data sync cable. Tap "Turn On USB Storage" on the phone when prompted.

2 Open a new browser tab or window

Open a new browser tab or window on the computer, navigate to the XDADeveloper forum website, and then download and save the Z4Root file to a folder on your computer.

3 To launch File Explorer

Press "Windows-E" to launch File Explorer, and then double-click the drive letter for the LG Optimus M memory card.

4 Press Window-E

Press "Window-E" again to open a second File Explorer window. Navigate to the folder where you saved the Z4Root app, and then drag and drop the Z4Root.apk file from the second File Explorer window to the LG Optimus M memory card window. Wait a few seconds for Windows to copy the Z4Root.apk file from the computer to the phone's memory card.

5 Disconnect the USB cable

Disconnect the USB cable from the Optimus M and the computer. Launch the Google Play app on the phone, and then search for and download a free file manager app such as File Manager, File Explorer or Astro File Manager (links in Resources). Follow the prompts to install the free file manager app on the LG Optimus M.

6 Search

Search for "Root Explorer" in the Google Play store (link in Resources). Purchase the app, download it and install it on your phone.

7 Launch the file manager app

Launch the file manager app, and then scroll down to and tap the folder for your phone's SD card. Tap "Z4Root.apk" to launch the installer, and then tap "Yes" to install the app when prompted. Reboot the phone after installing the Z4Root app.

8 Tap Settings

Tap "Settings," select "Applications," enable the "Unknown Sources" option, scroll down to and tap "Development," and then enable "USB Debugging." Scroll down to and tap "Development," and then enable "USB Debugging." Return to the Home screen.

9 Launch the Z4Root app on the Optimus M phone

Launch the Z4Root app on the Optimus M phone. Tap "Temporary Root" when prompted, and then wait a minute or two for the Z4Root app to root the LG Optimus M Phone.

10 Return to the Home screen

Return to the Home screen, tap "Applications," and then launch Root Explorer.

11 Scroll

Scroll down to and tap the "System" folder at the bottom of the Root Explorer screen. Tap the "Mount R/W" button at the top of the System folder screen. The button label changes to "Mount R/O."

12 Want to remove

Scroll down to the name of the application that you want to remove. Press and hold the name of the application until the Options window appears. Scroll down to and tap "Delete," and then tap "Yes" when prompted to confirm the deletion. After you delete the app package from the System folder, the app no longer appears on the Applications screen.

13 Delete other built-in apps built in from the Optimus M

Delete other built-in apps from the Optimus M as needed. Reboot the phone to remove the root, and then use your LG Optimus M as you normally would.

  • Do not turn the phone off after running the Z4Root app. If you do turn off the phone, you will need to root it again before you can access the System folder in Root Explorer.
  • Do not remove the following apps from the LG Optimus M, as doing so may render the phone unusable: MetroWeb, Phone and Settings.
  • You can safely uninstall many built-in apps on the Optimus M, including Analog Clock widget; Boingo WiFi; Calculator; Calendar App; Calendar Widget; Car Home; Car Home Launcher; Clock Weather Widget; Clock app; Alarm Clock widget; Dual Clock widget; Email app; Google Search widget and app; Home Selector; Metro Backup; LG Home Launcher; Metro Navigator; Easy Wi-Fi; Live Wallpapers; Live Wallpapers Picker; Loopt; Magic Smoke Wallpapers; Metro 411; MetroPCS App Store; Mobile Banking; MyExtras; Moco Space; Mobile IM; Music Player; Virtual Card; Pocket Express; Free Games; Tips widget; RSS Reader; LG Facebook and Twitter app; Google Talk; Think Free Office; UNO Game; YouTube video player and Mail@Metro.

Jeff Grundy has been writing computer-related articles and tutorials since 1995. Since that time, Grundy has written many guides to using various applications that are published on numerous how-to and tutorial sites. Born and raised in South Georgia, Grundy holds a Master of Science degree in mathematics from the Georgia Institute of Technology.