LG Scores Big With Borderless TV
By Kim Yoo-chul
LG Electronics, the world's second-biggest liquid crystal display (LCD) TV maker, plans to widen the market gap with its bigger rivals, including Sony, in 2010 by propelling its borderless flat-panel TV sets.
LG has been set to sell some 6 million borderless LCD TVs with LED backlights, next year, inspired by highly impressive initial moves in such sets after their debut, company officials say.
In September, LG has unveiled the seamless TVs that eliminate the seam between the screen and the surrounding bezel, available both in traditional LCD and LED-backlit LCD models.
Available in sizes ranging from 32- to 47-inches, the "SL90 LED-backlit LCD" and "SL80 LCD TV" series are adorned with a seamless front.
LG officials say the company was able to create these svelte TVs by using a new manufacturing technique that creates a sleek, uninterrupted glass-like surface.
The screen also sports laminate film on the surface, which reduces glare and improves picture quality.
The SL90 is distinct from the SL80 line thanks to its LED backlighting technology, which pumps up the contrast ratio to a whopping 3,000,000:1.
"Both lines feature an invisible sound system that hides slim speakers at the bottom of the TV, enhancing the visuals with quality audio. Bluetooth is integrated, too, which lets viewers hook up the set to compatible mobile phones wirelessly to easily share music and movies on the big screen," a company spokesman said.
Sales have been on a good roll. Within the two months since the global debuts of borderless TVs, over 100,000 units have been sold, according to the company.
In Europe alone, 46,000 sets were sold, while 19,000 and 12,000 were sold in North America and LG's home turf, South Korea, respectively, from September to November, LG said in a statement.
Of the LED-backlit SL90 model, 42,000 were sold, while sales of the traditional SL80 LCD model reached 58,000.
Citing the successful launching of the seamless TVs, analysts are positive about the profit outlook of LG’s home entertainment unit in 2010.
"We can say the borderless TV series will lift its TV-making unit in 2010. Enhanced user-friendliness of the products will appeal to premium buyers in LG's key markets," So Hyun-cheol, an analyst at Shinhan Financial, said.
LG aims to sell 25 million LCD TV sets next year.