LG Electronics Inc launched its first curved smartphone in Taiwan yesterday as part of efforts to boost its smartphone sales by 50 percent this year.
The South Korean electronics giant sold 300,000 smartphones in Taiwan last year for a 3 percent market share. However, those figures are expected to rise to 450,000 units and a 5 percent share this year, said Jackie Kim, director of mobile business at LG’s Taiwan branch.
LG’s Taiwan sales totaled about NT$3.5 billion (US$116.6 million) last year and made up 3 percent of its overall revenue. That figure is projected to rise to 8 percent this year, thanks to the rising selling price of its products, Kim said.
“Local operators are planning to shift their customers from 2G to 3G networks, which will drive demand for smartphones,” Kim told reporters at a press conference in Taipei introducing the G Flex, LG’s first smartphone with a curved display.
“As the smartphone market is saturated and Taiwan will not begin 4G operations until the second half of this year, we think overall smartphone volume in Taiwan will not grow significantly,” he said.
Prior to its Taiwan launch, the G Flex had been rolled out in select Asian markets including South Korea, Hong Kong and Singapore since its unveiling in November last year.
Of LG’s planned sales target of 450,000 smartphones in Taiwan this year, 66 percent will support 4G LTE wireless broadband, Kim said.
The company aims to be ranked among the top four 4G phone vendors in the local market, offering a complete range of 4G models based on Taiwanese carriers’ needs, including models supporting the 700MHz frequency band that are expected to be released late in the first quarter, Kim said.