LG of South Korea aims to take third place in Thailand's smartphone market this year, grabbing a market share of at least 10%.
LG Electronics (Thailand) marketing manager Sivakorn Damrongphatr (third from right), Somsak Athisaitrakul (second from right), product group head for mobile communications, and senior manager Kay Choi (right) pose with LG Optimus G presenters yesterday.
"We expect to rise from fifth to third place, behind leaders Samsung and Apple," said Somsak Athisaitrakul, head of mobile communications for LG Electronics (Thailand).
Nokia's BlackBerry and LG are fighting for third just as third-generation (3G) mobile broadband services are to start.
Mr Somsak said LG Thailand increased its marketing budget by 20% this year to 200 million baht, hoping to capitalise on an expected 300% growth in the local smartphone market, up from 150% in 2012.
Sales of smartphones will make up half of the 20 million mobiles projected to be sold in Thailand this year, an increase from 15 million last year.
Mr Somsak said competition means the market leader will not control more than a 30% share this year in Thailand.
The company is focusing on smartphones priced from 5,000 to 20,000 baht, a segment where it enjoys a 50% market share. Though smartphone prices could dip as low as 2,900 baht this year, LG does not want to jump into this market because of its low margins.
LG recently launched the Optimus G smartphone, priced at 19,900 baht and featuring a 1.5-GHz processor, a 13-megapixel camera and 2 GB of memory capacity.
Its next entrant is the 5.5-inch display Optimus Pro that is meant to compete with Samsung's Galaxy Note II.
LG expects its Thai smartphone sales to reach 2.5 billion baht this year.
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