LG smartphones get friendlier

LG smartphones get friendlier
Mohamad El Yassir, vice-president of sales at LG Electronics Gulf's mobile communications division; Sang Rhee, general manager of the mobile communications division at LG Electronics Gulf; Yong Geun-choi, president of LG Electronics Gulf; Ziad Matar, senior director of business development of Qualcomm; and Moheb Ramsis, senior director of business development for North Africa at Qualcomm; during the launch of the LG G5 and Friends in Dubai on Wednesday.

Dubai - LG has introduced plug-in modules as Friends for its flagship G5 smartphone

By Alvin R. Cabral

Published: Wed 13 Apr 2016, 7:48 PM

Last updated: Wed 13 Apr 2016, 10:02 PM

LG Electronics thought that a smartphone alone might be lonely. So they decided to bring along some "Friends" for the latest iteration of its flagship device.
The South Korean electronics giant officially unveiled the LG G5 in Dubai on Wednesday.
The device is the world's first modular smartphone. A modular smartphone is a device made using different parts that can be independently upgraded or replaced, while at the same time reducing e-waste.
With that, the LG G5 is more flexible, as evidenced by the add-on accessories that were introduced with it; it features a slide-out battery below, the cartridge of which can be replaced by either the Cam Plus, which transforms the phone into a camera with a DSLR-like grip, or the Hi-Fi Plus with Bang & Olufsen Play, which provides high-quality sound.
Two top executives of LG Electronics Gulf, speaking to Khaleej Times, touted the new device to provide a whole new experience for users. "We've created another ecosystem of the smartphone by being modular... and with that we have created customer value again," said Yong Geun-choi, president of LG Electronics Gulf.
Sang Rhee, general manager of the mobile communications division at LG Electronics Gulf, elaborated on the "fun" side. "We believe the smartphone isn't giving much excitement as before... so we asked ourselves, 'how can we bring this kind of fun to consumers' daily lives?'", he said.
The proliferation of devices such as drones and balancing scooters had also inspired LG, Rhee says, so they thought of making stuff that is more personal - hence, the LG G5 and Friends.
"We'd like our users see which would be their preferred friends [with the G5]," he added. "We were just trying to deliver a different kind of phone, and here it is."
Aside from the Cam Plus and Hi-Fi Plus, the LG G5's other Friends include the 360 VR glasses, which provides virtual reality experience just by a USB connection; the 360 Cam; and the Rolling Bot, a multi-purpose remote-controlled robot that does things like being a home surveillance camera.
The LG G5 has a 5.3-inch QHD display; a 2.1GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor; 4GB of RAM and 32GB of storage, expandable up to 2TB; a main camera with 16MP of standard focus and 8MP of wide focus, plus an 8MP front camera; and a removable 2800 mAh battery. It runs on the latest Android 6.0 Marshmallow operating system and comes with USB 2.0 Type C and NFC. It will be retailed for Dh2,499.
Asked if there are more Friends coming, Choi was direct in his answer. "Definitely. We can have more Friends."
- alvin@khaleejtimes.com

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