LG puts Windows Phone on back burner in favor of Android

LG Electronics is focusing more on smartphones running Google's (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android platform, and Microsoft's (NASDAQ:MSFT) Windows Phone is taking a back seat at the company, an LG spokesman confirmed.

In the wake of several reports in South Korean media that speculated about what Microsoft might do to try to repair its relationship with the handset vendor, LG spokesman Ken Hong confirmed to FierceWireless that while the company is primarily focusing on Android right now, it is not "giving up" on Windows Phone.

"Although we currently don't have another Windows device in the pipeline, that is simply because demand for Android devices is so strong," he said. "We've maintained since the beginning that LG will support whatever operating system consumers want but at the moment, our priority is to get our Android devices to a level where we feel we've covered all the bases, to use an American analogy."

Earlier, the Korea Herald reported that an unnamed LG executive said that while the company is continuing research and development for Windows Phone it is pulling back on new device launches. "The total unit of Windows Phone sold in the global market is not a meaningful figure," an LG spokesman told the newspaper.

Both the Korea Herald and the Korea Times reported that Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer may use an upcoming and previously scheduled trip to Seoul on May 22 to patch up relations with LG CEO Koo Bon-joon. Hong said he had no details on any possible meeting between the two executives. Ballmer will deliver a speech at the 2012 Seoul Digital Forum.

LG Electronics reported a drop in handset sales in the first quarter as weaker feature phones sales dragged down the business despite stronger smartphone sales. The company's flagship Optimus line of smartphones is based on Android, and LG's Android smartphones far out number its Windows Phone models. It would be a blow to Microsoft to lose LG as a partner and would put even more pressure on Nokia (NYSE:NOK) to boost sales of its Lumia-branded Windows Phones. 

Meanwhile, LG said it will unveil its cloud multimedia streaming service on May 1, enabling users to manage and consume digital content across Android smartphones, PCs and smart TVs (see related story).

For more:
- see this Korea Herald article
- see this Korea Times article
- see this CNET article
- see this LG release
- see this IDG News Service article

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