After multiple rumors in the mill since the beginning of this year, LG has confirmed that it is exiting the smartphone business worldwide. The decision 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,” LG said in a statement.
Some of the existing phones will remain on sale and LG says it will continue to 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”. The company hasn’t revealed anything about the layoffs and says “details related to employment will be determined at the local level”, the statement further read.
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. The Core technologies that were developed during the two decades of LG’s mobile business operations will also be retained and applied to existing and future products as per the company.
LG expects the process of winding down its smartphone business to be completed by the 31st of July 2021. A report making rounds a couple of weeks back claimed LG made a failed attempt at selling its smartphone division but as it failed to find a buyer, the company was forced to shut down the phone business.
The reports go way back to the beginning of the year that suggested this was going to happen. Back in December, LG was reforming its mobile division by outsourcing the manufacturing of its low-end and mid-range smartphones. This change was supposed to help LG to sustain longer and cut costs as its smartphone business which hasn’t shown growth for almost the last two years.
This news also confirms that LG’s rollable phone that has been under development won’t be launched either. The device was supposed to launch later this year as per LG’s own commitment it made back during this year’s CES event but seems like the plans have changed. LG’s last attempt at succeeding in the smartphone business was its ambitious Explorer series of devices that included the LG Wing which came with a dual-rotating screen.