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LG Look To Ditch Smartphones

LG is considering exiting the smartphone market completely in 2021 after losing approximately $4.5 billion ($A5.8bn) over the last five years, according to reports.

As per reports in The Korea Herald, LG CEO Kwon Bong-seok notified employees via an internal memo that the company is making big changes to its smartphone business.

LG confirmed the memo was genuine and told the publication in a statement: “Since the competition in the global market for mobile devices is getting fiercer, it is about time for LG to make a cold judgment and the best choice,” LG said.

“The company is considering all possible measures, including sale, withdrawal and downsizing of the smartphone business.”

However LG issued the following statement to Channel News regarding its mobile division in Australia.

“The article regarding closure of LG’s mobile business is based on old, unfounded rumours and speculation that have no basis in fact,” the statement reads.

Despite this, sources claim around 60 percent of staff in LG’s mobile division would be moved or reassigned to other business units within the company or LG affiliates.

LG has struggled to compete in the aggressive smartphone market against the likes of Samsung and Huawei and has failed to attract profit in its mobile division.

It seems the company’s latest offerings including the Velvet and Wing devices were LG’s last-ditch attempt to reel in smartphone customers, but it was ultimately unsuccessful.

Earlier LG phones including the G7, V40 and G8 also attracted similarly lacklustre sales.

LG did however tease a rollable phone-slash-tablet at CES 2021 with promises of a launch this year, but this could very well be the South Korean company’s last smartphone.

LG confirmed to The Verge the internal company email was legitimate but said nothing is set in stone.

“LG Electronics management is committed to making whatever decision is necessary to resolve its mobile business challenges in 2021,” an LG spokesperson said. “As of today, nothing has been finalized.”

It is likely LG will instead focus on its popular home appliances and TV portfolio with the launch of new LG signature products and OLED screens.

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