LG Electronics, a South Korean home appliances maker, announced that its combined shipment of smart home appliances has surpassed five million units worldwide, according to media sources.
The company manufactures Wi-Fi connected home appliances ranging from air conditioners, TVs, to robot vacuum cleaners and washing machines under the LG ThinQ brand. Sales of such products have increased sharply, said the company.
Downloads of the SmartThinQ app on smartphones, which is used to manage LG’s connected home devices, has surpassed two million, compared to one million posted at the end of 2017.
The South Korean company has been actively enabling Wi-Fi features since last year, as the company has a vision to apply artificial intelligence in homes.
“LG officially seeks to acquire some AI companies,” said Song Dae-Hyun, the head of home appliance and air solutions at LG, in a story reported by the Korea Herald back in October 2017.
LG does have its own voice technology and smart home AI platform called DeepThinQ. Compared with other platforms, however, its voice technology only speaks Korean and the platform does not support as many IoT devices.
In order to let consumers enjoy the popular voice technology, LG worked hard to integrate its products with voice assistants. The company finished the Google Assistant integration in September 2017 and the Amazon Alexa integration in April 2018.
More than 100 LG devices, including refrigerators, dishwashers, washing machines, dryers, air conditioners, air purifiers and vacuums, can now be controlled with Alexa or Google Assistant.
The other South Korean home appliance giant Samsung, meanwhile, has supported the two voice assistants longer via its SmartThings platform.
LG says it will dive deeper into the industry via open partnership and open platform. In other words, it would rather integrate other smart home players’ technologies than creating its own AI platform, strategically.