LG released its first phone running Google's Android platform in its home market of South Korea, part of a broader effort to strengthen its smartphone portfolio worldwide.
The device, called the LG-KH5200, is the second Android phone to hit the Korean market, and will be sold for around $573 through KT. SK Telecom, the country's top operator, recently launched the Motorola-made Motoroi, which also runs on Android. The LG device has a sliding Qwerty keyboard, 3-inch touchscreen and 5-megapixel camera.
LG has said that roughly half of the smartphones it releases this year will run Android, though it also will remain committed to Microsoft's Windows platform for phones. LG has so far taken a backseat to competitors in the smartphone arena, but is aiming to make a major push on that front this year. The company wants to command double-digit smartphone market share by 2012.
Samsung, LG's South Korean rival, also is planning a major smartphone push this year. Samsung said it plans to triple its smartphone sales this year as part of its effort to increase its overall handset sales by 19 percent.
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