When LG first unveiled its G5 flagship device back in February early this year, the smartphone was lauded for not only adopting a rather unique modular concept in design, but also for managing to actually demonstrate successfully that modular smartphones can indeed work. But despite the warm acceptance of the LG G5, the handset never quite generated enough sales to be considered a solid hit. Even though the notion of being able to use a wide range of add-on modules that can be attached to the G5 with ease sounded good on paper, it never really translated into actual buyer conversions.
Not surprisingly, there was talk that maybe the modular concept was not paying off after all for LG. A few days ago, there were reports that the South Korean tech giant was looking to ditch the modular design, especially for its upcoming flagship device, the G6 (presumably), which is expected to debut next year. It did not help that ETNews published a report saying that the company is indeed considering going for a more standard approach in the design of its next flagship device.
Fortunately, LG has issued a statement to clarify things. As explained by Ken Hong, the senior director of global communications at LG, the South Korean mobile manufacturer is currently looking into all angles and options for its next flagship offering. And it does not necessarily mean that it is foregoing the modular approach in favor of a more traditional style for the G6 or for any future major smartphone release from the phone maker.
A modular design has its pros and cons. The most obvious advantage, of course, is flexibility. The add-on modules allowed owners of the LG G5 to swap components according to specific user needs, and in the process, expand the capabilities of the handset. On other hand, users will also be burdened with acquiring additional hardware in order to take full advantage of the G5’s modular nature. And the modules themselves cost money, especially the 360 camera, the virtual reality headset, and the Bluetooth headset.
While there is a decent argument for discontinuing the modular approach, shifting gears right now could be awkward, to say the least. Sure, LG took a gamble by going modular, but if it makes a U turn right now, it is basically ensuring that the modules for the G5 become obsolete after just a year. Needless to say, mobile users who did purchase these modules will not be happy.
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