Korean digital gadgets sweep the world
Korean digital devices have become big hits overseas, setting off the so-called "digital Korean wave". Samsung Electronics has recently announced that it will install its liquid crystal displays at the Vatican Museum, one of the world's top-four museums, for two years. Samsung has installed fourteen 40-inch LCD monitors at the museum's information desk and two 46-inch LCD monitors at its entrance, and will soon provides LCDs, printers and DVDs for the museum's control room and offices. Samsung's monitors will provide the museum's visitors, which amount to four million annually, with information on the museum and exhibitions. So far, Samsung has introduced its brand in eight world-renowned museums.
LG Electronics, for its part, has installed a light-emitting diode electronic signboard in Piccadilly Circus, London's central district with annual human traffic of 60 million people. The area is the center of London's transportation infrastructure and a haven of cultural and shopping facilities. LG's signboard is expected to produce an advertisement effect worth tens of millions of dollars a year and bolster the company's brand marketing efforts. LG's signboard in Piccadilly Circus measures nine meters by five meters and has a maximum brightness of 6000 candelas, and boasts the highest resolution among all electric signboards in Piccadilly. LG Electronics uses the signboard to advertise its LCD TVs, fantasy monitors, mobile phones, steam drum washing machines and two-door refrigerators. The signboard will soon also broadcast news as subtitles around the clock. The company expects the signboard to emerge as Piccadilly's landmark thanks to its state-of-the-art technologies and superb design, like LG's signboard in Times Square in New York.
Apart from Samsung and LG, some 150 Korean IT and home appliance makers will also soon contribute to the popularity of Korean digital products overseas at the 2008 Consumer Electronics Show to be held in Las Vegas. Some 2200 companies from all over the world will likely participate in the event, staging fierce competition. Top Korean electronics makers have opened large-scale booths at the exhibition to showcase their highly touted products such as flat-screen TVs, Blu-Ray disks, HD DVDs, 5-megapixel camera phones, IP set-top boxes and others.
Samsung Electronics has opened its 2314㎡ booth at the CES's central hall to showcase some 450 high-tech products. At the event, Samsung plans to unveil its strategic flat-screen TV and an OLED-based TV. As a leading mobile phone maker in North America, Samsung will also demonstrate its Black Jack 2 (SGH-i617) smartphone, as well as its "Juke", "Upstage" and "Flip Shot", which were developed in a joint effort with AT&T, Verizon, Sprint and T Mobile. Samsung's semiconductors will likely draw the spotlight as well. Last year, Samsung unveiled the world's first 30-nanosecond 64-gigabyte NAND flash memory, the GDDR5 chips featuring the world's fastest speed of six Gbps, and the 16GB moviNAND. Samsung Techwin will showcase its high-speed image processing technology DRIMII, which it developed solely on its own, and a high-definition digital camera with a built-in AMOLED display.
LG Electronics has opened a 2380㎡ booth -- larger than last year -- putting on display high-tech displays, home theater equipment, and the latest models of mobile phones. PDP and LCD TVs featuring unprecedented designs will also debut at the exhibition. Visitors will also have a chance to sample LG's HD home theater system that was designed personally by Mark Levinson, who is lauded as a living legend of high-end audio. LG has recently received the Best of Innovation award for its PDP TV PG60. Other award-winning products from LG include five flat-screen TVs, four mobile phones, two home appliances, an audio player and a video player.
Daewoo Electronics will put on display at its 430㎡ booth digital video devices, portable digital gadgets and DIDs for commercial use. Daewoo has divided its booth, themed "Digital Dream", into six sections, each dedicated to full-HD TVs, Blu-Ray disks, PMPs, LCD TVs and others. The company's booth focuses on products intended for everyday use and new products slated for release this year. Daewoo is poised to publicize its brand among overseas buyers and consumers at the exhibition.
The digital Korean Wave will only be realized when Korean products produced using digital technologies are recognized as "Korean-made" for their outstanding quality. The IT sector is regarded in Korea as a new growth engine, but it faces cutthroat competition from globally renowned electronics makers boasting strong brand recognition, as well as from Chinese competitors with high productivity. To help the IT industry remain Korea's growth engine for a long time, it is necessary to develop ingenious products and nurture the "Made in Korea" brand rather than just concentrate on securing competitiveness in terms of technology and price. The digital Korean Wave has just begun taking its first steps. To ensure its success, collaboration on the part of the private and public sectors and academia is vital.