Law enforcement officers raided the headquarters of Samsung’s (005930) display unit in South Korea this week over allegations that it stole OLED technology from LG Display (LPL), Bloomberg reported. Officers sought to gather evidence and determine whether partners of the rival display-maker leaked its technology secrets and if Samsung was involved in any way. The two companies have been butting heads recently with a string of patent infringement lawsuits stemming from charges filed against six LG employees who were found to have stolen Samsung’s OLED technology last July. More →
LG (066570) has found success with its new Optimus G Pro phablet. The device launched in South Korea in late February and has already sold more than half a million units in a mere 40 days. The Optimus G Pro has seen considerably more success than the original Optimus G smartphone, which reached sales of 1 million units in four months on the market in South Korea, Japan, Canada and the United States. The company’s latest handset, which looks strikingly similar to Samsung’s (005930) Galaxy Note II, is equipped with a 5.5-inch full HD 1080p display, a 1.7GHz quad core Snapdragon 600 processor and a 13-megapixel rear-facing camera. The Optimus G Pro also includes a microSD slot, NFC, LTE connectivity, a 3,140 mAh battery and Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean. LG previously announced that the smartphone will be available in the U.S. later this year.
After reportedly dropping its earlier lawsuits against LG (066570), Samsung (005930) on Tuesday filed a brand new suit against its South Korean rival over alleged slander committed in a refrigerator ad. For those who need a refresher, Samsung and LG had been locked in a patent battle over OLED and LCD display technology, although both were said to be working toward patent peace with a settlement. LG recently reaffirmed its suit against the company and demanded compensation, and even made threats against Samsung’s new Galaxy S 4 smartphone. Unlike earlier disagreement, however, the latest lawsuit does not involve patents. More →
Ultra HD TVs with 4K resolution were the talk of the Consumer Electronics Show this year, but not even the director of industry analysis at the group that organizes CES each year was convinced Ultra HD TV would see meaningful adoption in 2013. According to a recent report, however, HDTVs with Ultra HD resolution might get off to a stronger than expected start. Digitimes claims its unnamed market observer sources expect display panels destined for Ultra HD TVs to account for as much as 20% of HDTV panel shipments in 2013. China-based TV vendors are expected to account for much of the early demand, and Innolux and AUO are named as the main suppliers of 4K display panels. Digitimes notes that pricing is still a barrier for widespread adoption, as Ultra HD panels cost about twice as much as comparable 1080p displays.
Not one to be left out, a new report suggests LG (066570) will also be building a smartwatch to compete with rumored offerings from Apple (AAPL), Samsung (005930) and Google (GOOG). According to The Korea Times, LG is developing a next-generation watch, along with another “innovative smart product” similar to Google Glass. The company believes that smartwatches are the next “must-have” devices and is interested in staying ahead of the technology curve. LG’s watch is rumored to be powered by Android, although it is speculated that it could run Mozilla’s Firefox OS. The latest rumors claim that Apple and Google are developing smartwatches, while Samsung’s mobile boss confirmed the company is also working on a connected watch that will launch later this year.
It was believed that Samsung (005930) and LG (066570) were inching closer to patent peace, however new arguments and demands have now emerged. Samsung on Wednesday was said to have dropped another patent infringement lawsuit against the company, however LG is “doubtful” of the report. The company reasserted its claims against Samsung, alleging that the company is using LG’s OLED technology illegally, and believes it deserves compensation, the Yonhap News Agency reported. Given LG’s demands and recent threats against Samsung’s Galaxy S 4 smartphone, it seems unlikely the two companies will settle their long running patent dispute behind closed doors.
Samsung (005930) has decided to drop a patent infringement suit against LG (066570) regarding LCD technologies, the Yonhap News Agency reported. The two companies have been embroiled in a patent battle over OLED and LCD technologies over the past year, however Samsung and LG have dropped recent claims and are moving closer to patent peace. More →
There is no doubt that LG (06657011) is nervous about the upcoming release of the Galaxy S 4. Samsung (005930) was able to create Apple-like buzz for its latest flagship smartphone and debuted a device last week with a number of new and unique features. One of those features, however, may infringe upon LG’s technology. According to the Yonhap News Agency, the two companies are said to be in a row over similar features in their flagship smartphones. More →
LG (066570) seems to have adopted the same clever guerilla marketing techniques that have served Samsung (005930) so well over the past year. Per Engadget, LG is trying to undermine Samsung’s grand Galaxy S IV launch by strategically placing its own larger billboards above the Galaxy S IV billboards that have sprung up all around Times Square in recent days. The LG billboards use the same enormous number “4″ that Samsung has been using for its Galaxy S IV ads, except LG is telling consumers that “The LG Optimus G is here 4 you now!” As Samsung grows bigger, we can expect to see its rivals target it more frequently with these kinds of ads as they fight to end Samsung’s dominance of the Android market.
As Apple (AAPL) and Samsung (005930) continued to divvy up just about all of the smartphone industry’s earnings last year, one other global vendor managed to step up and eke out a profit. LG’s (066570) smartphone business has inched up into the black thanks to gorgeous smartphones like the Optimus G, and the company confirmed on Sunday that it has now sold 10 million cumulative LTE-equipped smartphones globally. ”Aggressive pushing forward with 4G LTE technology allows LG to satisfy the needs of consumers and is a huge factor in our growing success in global LTE smartphone sales,” said LG Mobile boss Dr. Jong-seok Park. “Having established ourselves as a major industry player, we will continue to expand our footprint in the global LTE market with a wider range of differentiated, high quality LTE smartphones.” LG’s full press release follows below. More →
As the high-end smartphone market begins to slow following a period of breakneck growth, the companies that drove much of that growth are starting to broaden their strategies. Apple (AAPL) is eyeing emerging markets, while Samsung (005930) is looking to boost its enterprise presence while also increasing tablet sales. Samsung Mobile EVP Y.H. Lee recently told CNET that the company hopes to double tablet shipments in 2013 to about to about 40 million units. The 40 million-unit mark is also being eyed by LG (066570), which told The Wall Street Journal it hopes to cross that threshold with smartphone sales this year, representing 51% growth over 2012. ”The market is saturated, but with good products, [we] can take away others’ share,” LG’s mobile boss Park Jong-seok said.
LG (066570) on Monday announced that it had acquired webOS from HP for an undisclosed sum. Earlier reports noted that the two companies were in talks over a potential partnership as of last fall. Bill Veghte, executive VP for software and solutions at HP (HPQ), disclosed certain terms of the deal to AllThingsD on Tuesday. More →
Although it has flown somewhat under the radar compared with the Galaxy S III and the iPhone 5 stealing the show, the Optimus G has been a pretty successful smartphone for LG (006570). The device, which has sold more than 1 million units since its launch in October, has helped LG generate some buzz around its smartphone brand again and has made the company one to watch in the mobile space this year. And after speaking with LG Global Communications Director Ken Hong at Mobile World Congress this week, I came away very intrigued by LG’s plan to distinguish itself in the always-crowded Android market and to further build on its success with the Optimus G. More →