Microsoft’s Ballmer to Salvage Relationship with LG With Windows Phone?
After LG had announced that it would be pulling back from releasing Windows Phone 8 smartphones and will instead be focusing on Android through its Optimus brand, new reports are surfacing that Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer will be headed to Seoul, Korea later this month to dissuade its Windows Phone licensee from going all-in on Android. Ballmer is expected to hold a meeting with LG Electronics Chief and local representatives as well as developers after the Seoul Digital Forum on May 22.
Microsoft had confirmed that Ballmer will be speaking about ‘the new era of technology’ and will be staying for a day in Seoul. A PR rep for the software giant was unable to give any details for Ballmer’s meeting schedule, however, according to a report on the Korea Herald.
For its part, LG said that it was unaware that any meetings were scheduled.
LG, which had partnered with Microsoft’s now obsolete Windows Mobile platform head enjoyed a strong relationship in the past. When Microsoft had debuted the Windows Phone 7 platform, LG was bullish on the platform and promised numerous models based on Microsoft’s platform. However, that decision had placed LG in a precarious position with seven consecutive quarters of losses and the loss of its number three smartphone-maker title. In the meantime, South Korean rival Samsung had rose to become the world’s biggest phone-maker, surpassing Nokia for the first time for that crown.
Its unclear if Ballmer’s meetings will be centered around Windows Phone. Prior leaks suggest that Windows Phone 8, the next version of the platform, will be drastically improved. Additionally, as LG makes PC products, Ballmer’s meetings could also be centered around Windows 8 tablets, ultrabooks, and other computing products.