LG, Motorola executives tout new phones

By , IDG News Service |  Mobile & Wireless

The head of LG Electronics Inc.'s U.S. mobile phone business gave a glimpse of some upcoming multimedia phones from the South Korean manufacturer in a keynote address Tuesday at the CTIA Wireless trade show in Atlanta.

The phones, some coming to Europe and some to the U.S. this year, feature video, audio and high-quality camera features. Juno Cho, president of San Diego-based LG Mobile Phones, described them briefly during an enthusiastic keynote address about mobile devices as sources of self-expression, peace of mind and convenience.

The company plans to bring two-way mobile videoconferencing to the European WCDMA (Wideband Code-Division Multiple Access) market in the second quarter with the U8150.

The LG7000, a new phone with video camcorder capability, is set to launch in the U.S. market "very soon," Cho said. For the European market, LG expects to release in April the G7200, a video-on-demand phone using GSM/GPRS (Global System for Mobile communications/General Packet Radio Service). LG sees subscribers using the video-on-demand feature for MMS (multimedia messaging service) messages with video elements, as well as other applications.

In South Korea this month, LG introduced the LP3000, a CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access) phone with an integrated MP3 player as well as digital still camera and camcorder capability, which Cho said has proved popular with young consumers. Also this month, LG is rolling out in South Korea its LP8900, a phone geared for mobile commerce.

Also in his presentation, Cho and another LG executive demonstrated the use of a cell phone as the remote control for a "smart" home. Using a simple handset interface, simulating commands given from miles away, they turned off the kitchen gas for safety, turned on an air conditioner and viewed what was on each shelf of an Internet-connected refrigerator to come up with a shopping list.

Motorola Inc.'s new chairman and chief executive officer (CEO), Ed Zander, outlined announcements the communications equipment maker made Monday at CTIA and laid out what he sees as the biggest challenge of keeping people connected everywhere and all the time. The hardest job is not building devices and networks for use at home, in the office, in the car and walking down the street, it is making the transitions between those modes smooth and easy, he said.

Zander highlighted Motorola's agreement announced Tuesday with Good Technology Inc., in which Motorola will support Good's GoodLink wireless messaging and corporate data access system on its MPx handset. The MPx has a QWERTY keyboard and runs Microsoft Corp.'s Windows Mobile software. Professionals will be able to use GoodLink on the device with Microsoft Outlook.

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