Samsung and Apple aren’t the only manufacturers looking at new smartphone designs to attract customers. A new line by LG features a lot more personality than some of the competition, the South Korean manufacturer says.
The LG AKA smartphones feature a pair of animated “eyes” that activate when there’s a cover on the device. The eyes can move, shut, blink and wink depending on the user’s actions. LG said the phones, which come in yellow, white, blue and pink, have different personas, called “Eggy,” “Wooky,” “Soul” and “Yoyo.”
With the LG AKA smartphones, LG hopes to differentiate its devices based on design rather than hardware, which has become increasingly commoditized as smartphones largely have the same internal specifications. “Consumers won’t care that their brand-new phone is 0.2 seconds faster at loading Candy Crush than their last year’s model,” LG spokesman Ken Hong told the Wall Street Journal. “You can’t fight over hardware forever.”
The LG AKA smartphones include midrange specifications such as a 5-inch display and a 1.2GHz quad-core processor, 1.5GB of RAM and 16GB of internal memory, an 8-megapixel rear camera and 2.1-megapixel front camera, a 2,610 mAh battery and the Android 4.4.2 KitKat operating system. They sell for about $350 off-contract.
The LG AKA smartphones launched in South Korea late last year, where LG said the devices have seen “healthy sales and positive customer feedback.” They are now set to release in Hong Kong, China, Taiwan, Turkey, Thailand and Singapore during the next month.
After faring well during the first half of 2014, which included the launch if the LG G3 flagship smartphone, LG saw significant sales drops, which caused the company’s stock to fall by 25 percent after peaking in August 2014.
Despite the fact that several rivals, including Samsung and HTC, have already announced and will soon release their 2015 flagships, LG has yet to follow suit. However, rumors suggest the LG G4 could release by late April with unique features, including a curved display and a stylus.
Such a device could rival Samsung’s Galaxy S6 Edge smartphone, which features a curved display on both sides. But LG has already experimented with curved displays, having released the LG G Flex smartphone last year and the LG G Flex 2 in January. Unlike the Galaxy S6 Edge, the LG G Flex devices feature a vertical curve, meaning the entire device is curved, including the display.