According to Kedglobal reports on May 20, South Korean technology giant LG Electronics has terminated its cooperation with Meta in the field of extended reality (XR). Previously, the two parties reached an agreement in February this year to jointly develop XR devices including virtual headsets.

LG is currently seeking new partners to provide operating systems and software for XR devices it plans to release next year, people familiar with the matter said. According to people familiar with the matter, Amazon, another American technology giant, has become a potential partner.

At the end of February this year, Mark Zuckerberg visited Seoul, South Korea, and held talks with LG Electronics CEO William Cho and LG COO Kwon Bong-seok to discuss strengthening cooperation in the field of XR devices.

LG Electronics said at the time that leaders from both parties agreed to jointly develop next-generation XR devices, including an XR headset, and to collaborate on artificial intelligence devices. LG and Meta claim they will leverage their respective hardware technology and artificial intelligence expertise to release an XR headset in the first half of 2025 that will outperform Apple's latest mixed reality (MR) headset, the Vision Pro.

XR is an umbrella term covering technologies such as virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR). According to industry sources, LG recently severed its cooperation with Meta on the development of XR devices.

"The two parties had some differences when discussing XR devices. As far as I understand, LG believed that the synergies of the cooperation were not obvious and therefore asked to terminate the cooperation," said an industry insider.

Industry insiders pointed out that if the cooperation goes well, LG will embed Meta's operating system Horizon in its new XR devices, similar to the operating system of the Meta Quest Pro XR device.

In return, Meta can leverage LG's extensive global electronics sales network and advanced OLED panel technology to expand its XR device business. LG Group affiliates such as LG Display and LG Innotek are leaders in XR headset components.

LG Display is developing tiny organic light-emitting diode (OLEDoS) technology, while camera module maker LG Innotek is a global leader in high-end lens manufacturing.

LG Electronics is already seeking new partners for its XR headset business, sources said. Industry observers point out that Amazon is one of the most likely candidates given its streaming service Amazon Prime, which has more than 200 million subscribers worldwide. A strong streaming subscriber base is a key factor in the successful launch of XR devices.

Since Amazon doesn't have its own XR operating system, industry insiders speculate that LG's next XR headset may use Google's Android as its operating system. LG may also choose to develop independently since they own the webOS operating system for their TVs.

Industry observers expect Meta may be pursuing an XR partnership with Chinese company Tencent.

According to market research firm IDC, the global XR device market will grow from an estimated US$18.2 billion this year to US$35.7 billion (approximately 258.111 billion yuan) in 2026.

Source: IT Home

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