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LG smartphones will be no more as LG Electronics Inc. has announced that it will be closing its mobile business unit.
The decision, which was approved by the company’s board of directors earlier today, was made to allow LG to “focus resources in growth areas such as electric vehicle components, connected devices, smart homes, robotics, artificial intelligence and business-to-business solutions, as well as platforms and services.”
The decision comes as no surprise. LG refers to the mobile business as being “extremely competitive.” Aside from the smartphone market being dominated by two primary players in North America – Apple and Samsung – there is growing competition from Chinese brands offering lower-cost premium devices, like TCL, Huawei, Xiaomi, OnePlus, and ZTE. What’s more, upgrade cycles for mobile phones are typically only every two year (or longer). When it comes to the top sellers worldwide, IDC figures don’t show LG cracking the top five.
LG will continue to provide service support and software updates for customers who own its existing mobile products “for a period of time” that will vary by region. LG will work collaboratively with suppliers and business partners throughout the closure of the mobile phone business. Details related to employment will be determined at the local level.
Moving forward, LG says it will continue to leverage its mobile expertise and develop mobility-related technologies such as 6G to help further strengthen competitiveness in other business areas. Core technologies developed during the two decades of LG’s mobile business operations will also be retained and applied to existing and future products.
The wind down of the mobile phone business is expected to be completed by July 31 although inventory of some existing models may still be available after that.