December 19, 2016 12:22
Samsung plans to use batteries from LG Chemical in smartphones starting next year in a deal that could break decades of bitter deadlock between the two conglomerates.
Samsung has been in talks with LG Chemical since it had to stop using batteries from its own affiliate Samsung SDI after the debacle surrounding the combustible Galaxy Note 7 phone in October.
An industry insider said the two rivals have been having "very productive talks" although a final agreement has yet to be reached. "There is a strong chance that LG will start supplying smartphone batteries to Samsung around the second half of next year."
Another industry source said the chances of the agreement working out are "90 percent."
It takes at least six months to design, manufacture and test batteries that go into new smartphones, which would put the earliest possible date for a new Samsung phone with LG batteries in the second half of 2017 and rules out the Galaxy S8, which comes out early next year.
Samsung also recently had to turn to rival LG Display for LCD panels after Japan's Sharp decided to stop supplying them. "In the past, we tended to avoid buying products from LG out of pride," a Samsung executive admitted. "But we can no longer let our emotions get in the way and we need to make decisions based on business feasibility."
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