Posted by: Ihlwan Moon on July 21, 2008
With no tangible signs Motorola is turning around its mobile phone business, South Korea’s LG Electronics must have overtaken America’s once-iconic wireless brand as the world’s No. 3 handset maker in the second quarter of this year. Citing surging mobile phone sales, LG on July 21 posted a record quarterly net profit of $695 million for the April-June period, up 84% from a year earlier.
LG, which also makes TVs, flat-panel screens and home appliances, sold 27.7 million handsets in the second quarter, up 45% from a year earlier. And many analysts expect Motorola to report a considerable fall in its mobile phone shipments, from 27.4 million three months earlier, when it releases its quarterly results at the end of this month. Sony Ericsson, the handset joint venture between Sweden’s Ericsson and Japan’s Sony, reported an operating loss of 2 million euro last week, saying it sold 24.4 million handsets in the three months to June. Both industry leader Nokia and No.2 Samsung Electronics sell many more phones.
Now, the big question is how quickly Apple’s iPhone will revolutionize the handset industry. LG’s touch-screen handset models such as Viewty, Voyage and Secret did well in the second quarter, helping the company report a 14.4% profit margin in its phone business. But in the real smart phone segment, none of LG’s lineup really matches the allure of the iPhone.