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Posted : 2014-01-21 17:53
Updated : 2014-01-21 17:53

LG seeks deal with Fox for Web-based TV

By Kim Yoo-chul

LG Electronics is in talks with Fox TV, a major U.S. broadcaster, to buy the latter's content for its recently-released first Web-based TV, which will run on the software platform it bought from Hewlett-Packard last year, an LG official said Tuesday.

"We are negotiating terms with Fox TV to put its content and other services on our WebOS TV," the official said.

He added that LG, the world's second-biggest TV manufacturer, will launch large-scale promotional campaigns for content providers, broadcasters as well as leading distribution channels from the latter half of this year.

The partners will include BestBuy and large retailers in Europe and China.

"WebOS TVs will account for over 65 percent of total TV shipments we expect this year. This is a survival issue. We remain bullish over the outlook for WebOS TVs."

The official said senior executives at the home entertainment division, which manages its TV business, have met with U.S.-based partners to discuss possible contracts.

During this year's technology show in Las Vegas, LG unveiled the WebOS TV.

The rebuilt platform, which had been initially developed by Palm, expects to help expand the Korean firm's presence in the global TV market.

Explosive growth for smartphones and tablets are dealing a blow to demand for fixed-set televisions as consumers question whether they can afford to pay hundreds of dollars more for premium TVs.

Despite new orders and trends, LG is vying with market leader Samsung Electronics to gain more share of the market for connected TVs as it believes more consumers will opt for video services from content providers such as Netflix, Hulu and Amazon.com

"Fox isn't the only target. We are also in talks with major sports channels such as ESPN. Simply put, Google's Android and Apple's iOS platforms are dominating the mobile industry. But there are no dominant software platforms for televisions. We are ready to spend more money on that," said an official at LG Electronics' content-related division in the United States.

He said the company is looking at opportunities for acquisition deals, though he declined to comment further.

LG said earlier it will release 12 new TV models this year with ultra high-definition (UHD) display technology. The new sets, powered by WebOS, will deliver programs from streaming service Netflix.


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