COMMENT: Why Is LG Letting B+O Climb On Their Back.
0Overall Score

At Mobile World Congress in Barcelona LG is set to reveal new top end smartphones that incorporate Bang + Olufsen BeoPlay audio technology, but one has to ask why the Company has done this?

On one hand LG wants consumers top believe that their own Music Flow networked sound system is seriously up there. It delivers 24Bit sound playback capability.

Several publications have described the LG sound offering as being up there with Sonos. 

Digital Trends said of the LG Music Flow system “It offers competitive sound quality, with a dark and smooth punch of bass”. 

So why not deliver the new LG G5 with Music Flow as opposed to Bang + Olufsen B+O BeoPlay technology which is only as good as the LG Music Flow offering but at twice the price.

What LG is buying is a name, while Bang + Olufsen whose products are sold primarily via their own retail stores is getting global access to millions of consumers who will be exposed to the B+O branding on a smartphone and in global advertising run and paid for by LG. 

Ironically, it is not true B+O Play technology that G5 owners will get. For example, the B&O BeoPlay A2 which is the smallest of the B+O BeoPlay products has two 3-inch, full-range drivers and two 0.75-inch tweeters on each side. They are reinforced by a couple of 3-inch bass radiators, which help to add depth and meaning to the lower frequencies.

It’s a bit hard to get this technology into 5″ smartphone.
The new B+O Play sound will be included in the LG G5, which is set to be announced this weekend in Barcelona.

What an ‘enhanced high-quality audio experience’ means for users isn’t clear, from the announcement, but it looks like both LG and Bang & Olufsen are excited about the deal.

Juno Cho, President and CEO of LG Electronics Mobile Communications Company said “By collaborating with B&O PLAY, we believe we can meet and surpass the heightened expectations of consumers seeking the next generation of enhanced audio experiences on their smartphones. Our collaboration with B&O PLAY has proven mutually beneficial and LG will continue to work with other leading companies in a variety of different industries in order to set new standards for innovation in the premium smartphone market”.

So next time you are being told that LG’s Music Flow system is as good as a Sonos and it is, you may want to raise the question as to why LG is not using their own audio technology in their new Smartphones. 

Ironically I don’t believe that too many people actually listen to music straight out of their smartphones. Most use headphones or connect the device to a networked system which defeats the concept of partnering with B+O.

Maybe LG has a problem with their brand pulling capability.