LG V50 ThinQ with 5G to launch in South Korea on April 19

LG will launch its first 5G smartphone, the V50 ThinQ, in South Korea on April 19, two weeks after the release of Samsung's Galaxy S10 5G.

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LG V50 ThinQ with 5G connectivity will launch in South Korea on April 19, the South Korean electronics giant said.

The phone will cost 1,199,000 won (around US$1,050). Meanwhile, Samsung announced last week that the Galaxy S10 5G model would go on sale in South Korea on April 5 with a price tag of 1,397,000 won for the 256GB model.

LG said it had set a cheaper price to lower the entry barrier to 5G for consumers.

The company said it would also give the dual-screen flip cover that goes with the V50 ThinQ for free to customers that purchase the smartphone by May.

The 5G smartphone is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 processor, has a vapour chamber for better cooling, and comes with a 4,000mAh battery and a 6.4-inch OLED display.

It comes with 6GB of memory and 128GB of storage; a microSD slot for up to 2TB of additional memory; wide, standard, and telephoto rear-facing cameras with 16MP, 12MP, and 13MP, respectively; 8MP and 5MP front-facing cameras; and runs Android 9.0 Pie.

Last month, LG launched the G8 ThinQ which also had a cheaper price tag than rivals.

The move to have cheaper devices is seen as an attempt by LG to gain lost market share in its home country, especially through the 5G network. Until now, LG had resisted lowering the price tag of its smartphone in the LTE era due to concerns of losing brand credibility despite several years of operating losses.

According to Strategy Analytics, Samsung controlled 60.3 percent of the South Korean smartphone market share last year while Apple had 16.7 percent, leaving LG with only 14.3 percent. Samsung saw an increase of 4.1 percentage points from the previous year, Apple's share dropped 1 percentage point, while LG also dipped by 3.1 percentage points.

South Korea initially planned to roll out 5G networks by March but it has been postponed due to delays from industry players.

But in late March the government and telcos have agreed on a price plan, which includes a competitive 55,000 won per month data plan to make 5G more accessible to consumers.

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