South Korea's No. 2 tech giant, LG Electronics Co., said Wednesday it plans to showcase a high-end smartphone later this year that will come with upgraded specs compared with its flagship G lineup, and narrow gaps with Samsung and Apple.
"We are planning to release a product that stands above the G series," said Cho Jun-ho, who heads LG's mobile business in a surprise move at the Mobile World Congress that runs in Barcelona, Spain, through Thursday. "It will be launched during the second half of this year."
As LG's previous high-end models came with factory price tags of around 900,000 won ($819.82), industry watchers said the new handset is expected to hover above 1 million won.
LG added it will also seek to solidify its third spot in the global smartphone market in terms of revenue.
"We aim to have our smartphone sales grow 20 percent on-year in 2015," Cho added. "If the popularity of the G2 and the G3 continues through the G4, we expect to grab a meaningful third-place presence."
In 2014, LG took up 4.3 percent of global smartphone sales, a figure that only managed to beat China's Huawei Technologies Co. or Japan's Sony Corp. by less than 1 percentage point. Apple Inc. and Samsung took up 37.6 percent and 25.1 percent, respectively.
The tech player added it will also reorganize the low-end L and F lineup to four key brands -- the LG Magna, LG Spirit, LG Leon and LG Joy -- and expand the wearable lineup as well.
LG also rolled out the LG Watch Urbane at the MWC, whose corrosion- and scratch-resistant metal body and leather straps give the smartwatch an analogue look to appeal to users wanting traditional watches.
The company said its mobile devices will also make closer ties with the Internet of Things technology, a concept in which all tangible objects are connected to the Internet and can identify themselves to other devices to exchange necessary data for improved efficiency and convenience. (Yonhap)