Considering that the average smartphone gets used for two years, maybe, it’s no surprise that we haven’t seen many two-year warranties on smartphones until now. But, now that smartphones aren’t a growth market anymore, more and more people are settling down with their smartphones for longer amounts of time. Most of the players in premium smartphones know that, but it looks like LG is ready to try to capitalize on it. They’re now offering an extra second year on the warranty for the G6, an offer that even extends to those who have already purchased one.
It’s being called the LG G6 Second Year Promise, and it applies to any G6 sold from June 15 on. It won’t be an automatic activation for current or new G6 owners, though. Anyone who qualifies will have to register their G6, at which point the second year will be added. The second year covers the same defects as the first year warranty, so like always, things like water damage will put the kibosh on it. If you do need to use the warranty, you’ll get a new or refurbished G6 for sending back your defective unit.
Unfortunately for LG, this probably isn’t out of generosity. Despite the LG G6 being (by our account and that of many others) an excellent phone, LG’s mobile division has remained in the doldrums. It’s not a coincidence that this announcement was made alongside the release of LG’s quarterly results, which don’t look great for the company’s smartphones. Overall LG is doing fine, but the mobile division took a $117.27 million loss — not as bad as this time last year, but still a drag on the profits being taken in by other divisions.
With growth in the smartphone market plateauing, it’s going to be harder and harder for companies to compete — especially in the United States, where Apple and Samsung are overwhelmingly dominant. Smartphones are low-margin products, too, so a poorly selling devices can really put a drag on a company. If even LG, which made by most accounts an excellent product in the G6, is struggling to compete, it’s hard to imagine that we’re not headed for a day of reckoning for a market that still has a pretty high number of competitors. It’ll be interesting to see if LG’s new two-year warranty moves the needle for them in the quarters to come — if not, they might be caught up in that reckoning.