How LG made an early Android mistake

Did you know LG was supposed to be the manufacturer of the world’s first Android phone?

That’s the big news circulating around the Web today after it came to light in a Wall Street Journal article. But apparently, the company stopped and backed out of the deal, leaving Google to find another partner to introduce Android hardware to the planet.

That partner would become HTC, a company hardly no one in the US had ever heard of, largely because it had almost no presence here.

So the G1 was born, and almost instantly rocketed HTC to superstar status. Today, HTC is one of the most acclaimed manufacturers of Android phones and has earned such designations as the company behind the country’s first 4G phone and the first 3D phone.

It could easily be argued that HTC is now a more favored mobile manufacturer than LG. So in hindsight, was LG in the wrong? If the company had gone through with its plans to make the first Android phone, there’s no saying it would be as successful in the market as HTC is now.

But it clearly didn’t do itself any favors. So why back out in the first place?

It may not have just been that LG got cold feet. The WSJ article suggests there were disagreements about what the design of the hardware should be. It must have been tough, with LG’s decades of manufacturing experience clashing with Google’s utter lack of experience in such a market but nevertheless a passionate need to make the first Android phone a success.

HTC, meanwhile, which was probably desperate to make a splash in the US, most likely was significantly more amenable to whatever requests Google had. The rest, as they say, is history.