LG Electronics, the world’s second-biggest TV producer, vowed Tuesday to cut prices of premium TVs, including those with ultra high-definition (UHD) technologies.
“OLED TVs and UHD TVs are ready to go into the mainstream. LG will clearly lead initiatives by guaranteeing a greater affordability to customers,” Ha Hyun-hwoi, president and CEO of its home entertainment division, told reporters.
Commenting on worries that its aggressive pricing policy concerning these TVS may hurt the firm’s profitability, Ha said, “LG is ready to embrace a fall in profitability. If those TVs become more popular, we will be able to generate more profits.”
LG has unveiled 16 new UHD TV models ― its sizes include 105, 79, 65, 55 and 49 inches. It also unveiled 77-, and 65-inch TVs with curved displays.
In a press release, LG said the 49-inch curved UHD TV will sell for about 2 million won (US$1.870.-) The curved 55-inch UHD TV will be sold at a suggested retail price of 3 million won. (US$2.805.-)
Ha said the defect rate of LG’s OLED TVs has dropped to a “manageable level.”
The firm plans to boost sales in the United States and Europe by cutting the prices of OLED TVs.
Major TV manufacturers, which are hungry to find new cash-cows amid the stalling demand for flat screen TVs hit by the rise of smartphones and tablets, believe OLED TVs and UHD TVs will provide a turnaround.
The market leader Samsung and LG are putting more resources toward UHD TVs because they are cheaper than OLED TVs and have more vivid picture images.
DisplaySearch, a market research firm, said Samsung was the top TV seller with 26.8 percent of global share last year, followed by LG with 15.3 percent.
“Despite steady gains in market shares, total TV shipments have fallen for the second consecutive year. This provides both challenges and opportunities for LG and Samsung,” said an LG official.
Although LG is seeing intense competition with Chinese rivals, Ha said there is still a wide technology gap between LG products and those manufactured by Chinese budget TV makers.
“When you see UHD TVs made by Chinese firms, it’s hard to say these models are ‘real’ UHD TVs,’’ said Ha.
As for security concerns for connected TVs, the CEO said LG TVs are “totally safe” from hacking and a leakage of personal information.
“This is a really important issue. So far, there have been no reports that LG connected TVs were hacked or the information of their users was stolen,” Ha said.