If anyone – anyone at all – can better Apple at building devices that people want to use, it is LG, the South Korean electronics giant, who more and more, prove themselves up to the task. LG are innovative. They are full of clever designers. When I sat with them in an informal Q&A last year about upcoming iPhone-killer smart phones, it was obvious they ‘got it’. The problem I see with the iPad is that it is just so ungraceful; you can’t type on it, you can’t create on it – you can’t do aught but consume media. That is the iPad’s problem. Android will fix all that and LG will magically wave the form factor away. Combined with Android’s wealth of productivity , its smooth, fragmentation-free hardware glut, and its simplicity will show Apple who is boss – that is, if LG can help them out.
If you’ve ever owned an LG phone, or read through an LG manual; if you’ve enjoyed their incredible style and poise in the marketplace, you know what I’m talking about. LG, if anyone can better than iPad, it is you, the Yoda of electronics.
^^ sic ^^
The ever-resourceful @DaringFireball got me onto a clever fellow by the name of Horace Dediu who runs asymco, a quirky but engaging mobile-focused blog. He does a lot of his own research, loads his site with great articles, and gets clicks. This one just happens to be his research on the average selling price (ASP) of mobile phone competitors: Nokia, Apple, LG, Samsung, Motorola, Sony Ericcson, and RIM. The results are sour grapes for most of the companies; only Apple and RIM come away without looking foolish.
More after the gap:
As I mentioned before, neither LG nor Samsung have a clue how to design mobile phones, but the ever fickle SKT are harbouring thoughts of cranking out Android products from either company rather than selling Apple’s iPhone. On the one hand, Android is a very good platform which I respect; it would make little sense for SKT to pass up the business opportunity afforded by the clever OS. But on the other hand, in serving an LG or Samsung Android, the telecom mogul will only further entrench itself in the quagmire of a stodgy Korean-only oligarchy.
When the iPhone comes to these shores in November, it will bring a lot of extra baggage with it. In truth, it is only one of a handful of smart phones which will debut in Korea – a category of phones that may have trouble taking off. Obvious restrictions on data, packages, and other general internet tom-foolery have kept such devices at a wary distance from the tech-savvy nation, but all of that may soon change – in fact, it must.
Recently, I had the opportunity to see what LG were up to in the mobile phone arena. It was a small event — just a survey — where LG ran slides and concepts by a group of 12 hungry techies and asked for feedback which took the form of a ~35-page evaluation booklet. The electronics giant is planning to release a hi-tech touch-screen phone which ostensibly could come to market in 1-2 years. As the number 3 mobile phone manufacturer in the world, LG have made more cheap plastic phones than Ford made cheap, black, metal cars. But, unlike Ford, whose innovation was the industrious factory line which brought the automobile to the masses, LG already have mastered the art of cheap and tasteless. Their next phone will seek to tackle a new concern: usability and viability in the world marketplace.