[THE INVESTOR] LG Electronics is expected to produce Google’s upcoming Pixel 3 smartphone from next year, replacing the current producer HTC of Taiwan, Chosun Biz reported on May 11.
About 5 million Pixel phones have been sold around the world. Google reportedly believes it could have sold more phones but there were some supply constraints in the early days of the launch.
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“Google is seeking a new partner for the phone’s stable supply,” an industry source was quoted as saying in the report. “It is also likely that LG will produce some Pixel 2 phones that will be launched in the latter half of this year.”
Sources say Google is teaming up with LG to secure OLED screens in the long run, considering Samsung Display that dominates almost 95 percent of the mobile OLED market is supplying mostly for its sibling Samsung Electronics and Apple.
The US internet giant recently hinted at a 1 trillion won (US$886 million) funding for LG Display's OLED production, but LG declined to confirm the offer.
The possible Pixel production is expected to help elevate sales of LG’s struggling mobile business unit. HTC earns about US$100 million. Depending on the results of Google’s latest mobile push, the phone sales could increase in the coming years.
LG produced Google’s Nexus phones, Pixel’s reference phones for developers, in 2012, 2013 and 2015.
By Lee Ji-yoon (firstname.lastname@example.org)