It looks like LG’s retirement from the mobile industry will spell bad news for Samsung on its home turf. It turns out that Apple could end up selling iPhones and other fruit-labeled products in South Korea through LG’s expansive retail infrastructure, after all, and thus becoming a much more significant threat to Samsung in the process.
LG will formally finalize its exit from the mobile market later this month. LG Electronics will maintain its focus on computers, home appliances, and other household products, but the company is no longer manufacturing and selling phones under its brand. With no new LG smartphones being planned to be sold in South Korea, Apple sees this as an opportunity to occupy those empty spaces on the shelves with iPhones, iPads, and Apple Watches.
Apple to sell products at 400 LG Best Shops nationwide from August
According to a new report from the local media, LG has agreed to sell Apple products, including iPhones, iPads, and Watches, through its wide retail network nationwide starting August. Its network comprises 400 LG Best Shops, so Apple’s products will be almost ubiquitous.
Now, as you all probably know by now, Samsung will host its next major Galaxy Unpacked event on August 11, where its latest foldable phones and wearable devices will be unveiled. So, the fact that Apple wants to increase its retail footprint through LG starting August might not be a mere coincidence. It’s more likely that Apple wants to take the fight to Samsung and oppose the company’s push into the era of foldables as much as possible.
To avoid a conflict of interests, Apple won’t be selling iMacs or Macbooks in LG’s stores, as the latter company continues manufacturing PC components and laptops of its own.
Is LG going against the National Mobile Communication Distribution Association?
LG’s decision to partner with Apple has caused some controversy in South Korea, as this new business plan might be going against an earlier “win-win” agreement established by the National Mobile Communication Distribution Association.
The Distribution Association initially claimed that the LG-Apple alliance goes against the “win-win agreement for small and medium enterprises” signed in 2018. However, this early conclusion is now being re-evaluated because of LG’s new position in the market. LG’s role is not the same as it was back in 2018, and because it has retired from the mobile industry, the company could be in its rights to sell Apple products at its stores.
Whatever the case may be, Apple’s aggressive push into South Korea doesn’t spell good news for Samsung, and it’s odd to think that LG’s demise might have a huge negative impact on Samsung’s domestic mobile business in the long run.