It's official. We had heard rumours for a while but yesterday the Korean company announced it would be closing it's phone division.
And that's a shame in my mind.
The phone market has been dominated by the big players of late with smaller companies struggling for even a portion of a percent. Even the medium sized companies.
There was a time when if you weren't Apple, you could be Moto, you could be HTC, you could be LG, you could be Samsung, and more. Sadly, we don't see those names much anymore, and LG we won't be seeing for phones at all.
Really sucks, as I had always had a soft spot in my heart for LG, they were one of the first firms to really look at our little site and show us some respect. First company to pay to fly me out to play with new phones. But losing LG is more than that, I think we're losing some real phone innovation:
- First to put buttons on the back of the phone where it was convenient for your fingers
- First to put that finger print sensor there too
- First to put an absolutely decent sized battery into a phone
- First to try that leather back case to make it feel like it was quality (it did feel nice)
- First to try and really push the professional photography angle
- First to add in a Quad DAC to appeal to the audiophiles
- First to try out those things called mods
- They were going to be the first 'rollable' phone
Maybe, not exactly the first, but the first real commercial size/scale device for the masses.
Sure, we all remember the terrible balloon phone / bb gun incident - if you don't know what that is, go look it up.
We'll miss you LG in the phone realm. Check out their press release below and then some answered questions for those with LG phones currently to help assuage any fears of a sudden interruption of service.
LG TO CLOSE MOBILE PHONE BUSINESS WORLDWIDE
Stepping Away from Phone Manufacturing and Sales Enables Company
to Focus on Growth Sectors Including EVs, IoT and B2B Solutions
SEOUL, April 5, 2021 — LG Electronics Inc. (LG) announced that it is closing its mobile business unit. The decision was approved by its board of directors earlier today.
LG’s strategic decision to exit the incredibly competitive mobile phone sector will enable the company 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.
Current LG phone inventory will continue to be available for sale. LG will provide service support and software updates for customers of existing mobile products for a period of time which 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 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.
QUESTIONS & ANSWERS
LG MOBILE BUSINESS ANNOUNCEMENT
1. How long will LG mobile products be available for purchase?
A. LG mobile phones will be available for purchase while supplies last. Check with your carrier for specific product availability.
2. Will my phone still work?
A. Your current LG phone will continue to work with your service provider.
3. Will customer services be available to LG phone users after the closing down of the mobile business?
A. In Canada, LG will fully honour its standard 1-year limited warranty included with each LG mobile phone. LG will provide additional after-sales support depending on the model and contractual obligations. After-sales support can be found here: http://lg.com/ca_en/support or by calling 1-888-542-2623 from 8:00 a.m. ET to 9:00 p.m. ET, 7 days a week.
4. How long will repair parts be available? Will I still be able to buy mobile accessories?
A. LG will continue to provide service parts for a minimum of two years from the phone purchase date.
Supplies may be limited for various accessories, such as protective cases.
5. Will operating system upgrades continue be provided?
A. An Android 11 OS upgrade is currently under development, and we also intend to provide an Android 12 OS upgrade, for select models. You will receive a notification on your phone if/when an update is available. Please contact 1-888-542-2623 with any questions.
6. Will software updates continue to be provided?
A. LG will provide security, software, and feature updates for at least two years for select models following the device’s release.
7. How long will LG applications and services continue to be available?
A. Applications and services will continue to be available and updated in line with the current policies. Relevant information regarding availability will be announced in advance of changes.
8. What are LG Electronics’ plans regarding the LG ThinQ app that monitors and controls home appliances?
A. The LG ThinQ app will continue to be available for download on both Google Play and iOS App Store so consumers can continue to use the LG ThinQ ecosystem of smart products and services.
9. What does LG closing its mobile business mean for current and future phones?
A. It means LG mobile phones will no longer be available after current inventories are sold. LG will not be introducing any new phones into the market in the future. For specific product availability, please check with your carrier.
10. What is the status of LG’s Second Year Promise program?
This no-cost extended limited warranty program will be fully honoured, continuing for those who register their eligible new phone per the program conditions. For more details, please see https://lgextendedwarranty.ca/
11. Besides phasing out smartphones, what about other LG wireless devices?
A. LG wireless headphones, earbuds and Bluetooth speakers will still be available from LG Electronics Canada.
12. How will customers’ personal information be properly handled?
A. LG mobile phones operate on your carrier network using the Android operating system and can run third party apps and services. LG will continue to handle any personal information it collects via its apps and services in accordance with its privacy policies and applicable laws. For product registration and customer service, please see https://www.lg.com/ca_en/
13. What happens to the personal information stored on my device?
A. Personal data on your phone will remain accessible to you as your phone remains fully functional. To the extent you store data on a cloud service by a carrier, Google or other third party provider, consult with the terms and conditions provided by such provider.