LG is definitely not anywhere near the mess they were in about 18 months ago, nevertheless their cell phone sales were off this quarter. In Q1 2012 LG shipped 13.7 million mobile units. That’s down 4 million from Q4 2011 and nearly 14 million from the same quarter last year when they sold 27.1 million units. LG says that weaker feature phone sales dragged down the business.
Overall LG’s mobile business posted a $34.2 million dollar profit. LG’s mobile business includes handset and mobile device sales as well as network sales. The handset division had a positive operating margin of 1.4 percent in the fourth quarter that’s up from the -3.5 percent operating margin in the same quarter of 2011.
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LG said they don’t expect sales to grow too fast in the second quarter. They expect their smartphone sales to grow. They plan on adding more LTE devices in developed markets. LG has also said they have quad-core devices coming like the LG Optimus 4X HD with an Nvidia Tegra 3 processor.
LG commented about their mobile device projections for the entire year saying they plan on selling 80 million handsets, 35 million smartphones and 8 million LTE smartphones in 2012. Right now their biggest competitor is actually in their backyard. Sales of the Samsung Galaxy series devices have set LG, Motorola and Sony into a second tier category. The only OEM that is anywhere close to Samsung at this moment, with smartphones and Android devices in particular is HTC.
IDC says that LG sold 88.1 million handsets in 2011 which was down from 116.7 million in 2010.