LG Preparing To Launch A Windows Phone 8 Handset In 2013
South Korean tech firm LG is looking to claw back some of its lost ground in the smartphone business in 2013 with a new range of Windows Phone 8 handsets.
In an interview with the Korean Times, a senior executive at LG has said that the company plans to reveal a 5.5-inch full-high definition flagship smartphone at February's Mobile World Congress (MWC) in the Spanish city of Barcelona.
"We will release quite a number of new Optimus devices this year and LG also has some new smartphones in the works, that will run Microsoft's Windows Phone 8,'" said the senior executive.
LG has slipped to a second-tier smartphone manufacturer behind its rivals Apple and Samsung. The company also faces competition from Chinese firms Huawei and ZTE. However, the company has been showing a stronger performance in the sector than some of its closes competitors, such as HTC and Nokia. In October, Reuters reported that LG's smartphone shipments in the three months to end-September jumped 59 percent on a year ago and 23 percent on the previous quarter to a record 7 million, as the division swung back to a profit.
The Korean Times says LG is aiming to sell 75 million handsets in 2013, up sharply from its early estimate of 55 million. Of that 75 million, LG is said to be looking at selling 45 million profitable smartphones and the remaining 30 million will be budget and feature phones.
If the South Korean firm does introduce a Windows Phone 8 handset, it will become the fifth company to adopt the new OS, alongside Nokia, HTC, Samsung and Huawei.
The OS, released in October 2012, has struggled to gain traction in the smartphone market since its release. A report from analysis firm Nielsen reported in December that Windows phone still only made up 2% of all smartphones, a figure that has barely moved since 2011.
Microsoft will be looking to turn around the fortunes of the nascent operating system in 2013, and partnerships with companies like LG will be key to making that happen.