The cash cow of LG Group, Korea's second-largest conglomerate, recently said it would introduce a pair of LG-made digital cameras with a resolution higher than 3 mega pixels this autumn.
"On the strength of LG's superior brand image and strong sales network abroad, we think we have a handsome chance to make money from digital cameras," an LG Electronics spokesman said.
As a more profound reason, the spokesman pointed out the mounting significance of digital cameras in high-end digital gadgets, which typically sport several features.
"Digital cameras have emerged as a must in almost all top-of-the-line gadgets like mobile handsets, MP3 players or personal digital assistants. We will keep channeling our research resources into developing camera function," he added.
Initially, LG will focus on overseas markets with the aim of rolling out a 3-mega-pixel model and another 4-megapixel model in the third quarter.
It said it will just take charge of the layout and design of the gadgets and a Taiwanese company will churn out them. Although LG vowed to tap foreign countries first, it is expected to turn its eyes back to the local market after checking the product's commercial viability.
Currently, the only Korean digital camera maker Samsung Techwin has been waging a lonely competition against Japanese players like Olympus, Sony and Canon here.
Samsung sold around 340,000 units of digital cameras last year with around 20 percent of them snapped up locally, and it aims at increasing the sales figure to 600,000 units this year.
According to researcher GfK Korea, the nation's digital camera market stood at just 430,000 units in 2002 but the tally is forecast to about triple this year to 1.2 million.