LG Is Finally Giving Up On Its Yearly Smartphone Cycles

The South Korean tech giant is done with competing against Samsung and Apple's strategy.

LG is abandoning its yearly smartphone cycles.
Michael Sohn / AP Images

The South Korean tech giant is done with competing against Samsung and Apple's strategy.

After what could be an 11th consecutive quarter of losses, LG is finally pulling the plug on its yearly smartphone cycles. While the LG G7 and the LG V40 might still see the light of day, LG CEO Electronics Vice Chairman and CEO Cho Seong-jin confirmed in a statement at CES 2018 that the South Korean tech conglomerate would not release flagship smartphones on a yearly basis anymore.

In a lot of ways, the decision makes perfect sense for LG, a smartphone manufacturer that unfortunately gets eclipsed by more popular rivals most of the time. Over the past few years, LG has released handsets that could have easily been the leaders in the smartphone industry. Unfortunately for the tech giant, its smartphones’ thunder usually gets stolen by handsets from more popular rivals, such as Apple and Samsung.

This unfortunate trend has resulted in LG losing a lot of money on its smartphone business, according to a report from the Korea Herald. For 11 straight quarters, LG’s mobile phone division has been plagued by significant losses. During Q4 2017 alone, estimates are high that LG would be posting yet another significant loss. Last year, LG reported a total loss of $650 million, a substantial amount of money considering the popularity of the industry. Apart from this, the bulk of the money earned by the tech firm came from budget phones, rendering the yearly cycles of its flagship line, the G and the V series, impractical.

While it is abandoning its yearly flagship cycles, the LG CEO did state that it would still be competing at the top end of the smartphone market. According to an Android Authority report, the South Korean tech giant would be releasing modified versions of its flagship units to compete with the rest of the industry. Thus, in the years to come, fans of LG’s devices might see the units such as the LG G7 Pro and the LG V40 Pro to be released.

While LG’s smartphone business seems to have lost this round to its rivals, the South Korean tech giant is making a lot of waves in other industries. According to the CEO, LG’s efforts in consumer robotics, for one, has been incredibly successful, with the tech firm releasing several popular home robots that have proven to be huge successes. Its home appliances division, which develops televisions and other consumer electronics, has been incredibly successful as well.