Interview with Life Innovation Design Center of LG Electronics: Innovation for a Better Life
"LG is a life brand that focuses on the lifestyles of our customers. We pursue innovation that enriches customers lives and values people."
In the Korean manufacturing industry, which regards design as the soul of the industrial development, LG Electronics is the most outstanding representative and the most active participant in the national policy of “design-driven enterprise development”.
Alongside with LG Electronics’ design history is its brilliant award-winning course – over the years, LG’s design works have won numerous international design awards, including 363 iF DESIGN AWARDS, which can be earliest traced back to 1997. At iF DESIGN AWARD 2022, LG Electronics won the highest award – iF DESIGN AWARD GOLD for its “LG OLED Objet Collection, Easel” once more. Besides, it also won 16 iF DESIGN AWARDS in the discipline “Product Design” and another three in the discipline “User interface”, all of them showcased in the .
So how did LG Electronics manage to innovate and stand out in the nearly saturated market of traditional home appliances? How are the development history and current situation of its Life Innovation Design Center? With these questions, Package & Design conducted an exclusive interview with Life Innovation Design Center of LG Electronics. An extract is published here by iF Design in 08/2022 in courtesy. For the complete original print version, click to download.
►Q: Package & Design ►A: Life Innovation Design Center at LG Electronics
About LG OLED Objet Collection, Easel TV - iF DESIGN GOLD AWARD-Winning Work 2022:“We challenged ourselves to design a device that could challenge people’s perceptions of what a TV should be. We wanted them to know that a TV can be much more than a device we simply use to watch shows, that they can provide new experiences that make life better every day.”
Q: First of all, congratulations on “LG OLED Objet Collection, Easel” TV’s winning the iF DESIGN GOLD AWARD 2022 ! – Could you please first talk about the design concept of this product? What are the biggest differences between this TV and other TV products on the market? What are the highlights and innovations in the design?
A: “LG OLED Objet Collection, Easel (65Art90)” TV gives you the whole new scene itself, where the TV is placed both when it’s turned on and off. We challenged ourselves to design a device that could challenge people’s perceptions of what a TV should be. We wanted them to know that a TV can be much more than a device we simply use to watch shows, that they can provide new experiences that make life better every day.
The TV’s frame resembles a modern picture frame, and when leaning against the wall it gives the impression of something special. It peaks people’s curiosity and makes them question if it’s a TV or a piece of furniture. Its sleek metal frame is complemented by a fabric panel that brings a warmer, cozier feel to the room. Also, the proportion of the screen is designed to fit in any space and locates there elegantly with harmony with the space.
In terms of usability, the quiet and smooth movement of the front fabric cover is fantastic, creating a view like a horizon by not completely covering the screen to give LG’s unique Line View UX experience.
Every effort we make when designing a product is geared towards providing more options to users. We believe the product should give them freedom to create their own scene, according to their needs and situation. Users can have diverse experiences with “LG OLED Objet Collection, Easel (65Art90)”. We let users choose a fabric with various colorways without changing the product itself, and they can even position their TV screen at the perfect viewing angle for them. They can also choose to watch something in Full Screen or Line View mode. With Line View mode, users can listen to music or get weather and time information whenever they want.
Image: LG OLED Objet Collection, Easel (65Art90)
‘A TV that becomes a work of art in the space’
The real metal frame, fabric element, and screen proportions help the TV resemble a modern picture frame and even a work of art. It makes the user feel like they have their own art gallery at home.
The screen proportion can be changed through the movable fabric cover which maximizes the usage of the screen by allowing different modes – when set to Line View, the cover slides up to reduce the amount of screen visible and give users access to useful features and modes such as Date & Clock and audio player.
Even when not in use, users can enjoy listening to music and relax, manage their daily schedule and thereby enhance their quality of life.
The frame's floor-to-floor design distributes weight effectively, reducing stress on the walls.
For LG OLED Objet Collection (Easel) premium natural interchangeable fabric cover in collaboration with LG Electronics and innovative Danish textile company, Kvadrat, is applied. LG’s unique, new product boasts a subtle, modern aesthetic that adds value to one’s living environment.
Q: We know that the Objet Collection is a home appliance series launched by LG in 2020, aiming to lead the personalized trend of home appliance with a new concept. – Could you please introduce the LG Objet Collection as well as its product concept and design features?
A: The LG Objet Collection was proposed in 2020 as a new home appliance concept. The concept was originally based on a product we launched in 2018 as a series of home appliances that combined with different furniture. We renewed LG Objet to complete the series as a collection, adding more products to cover every space in the home, including the kitchen, living and laundry room.
We focused on harmonizing products with spaces to bring greater unity to home designs, without giving a sense of difference even when LG Objet Collection appliances are placed with several other different home appliances.
LG Objet Collection
About LG Life Innovation Design Center and Design Management at LG Electronics:“The LG Life Innovation Design Center tightly governs its four design labs across the four LGE companies. In this way, LG can deliver designs that share a consistent design language and philosophy to preserve the company’s design identity.”
Q: The history of LG products’ winning the iF Design Awards can be traced back to 1997. – In which year did LG Electronics establish its in-house design department? How did today’s “LG Life Innovation Design Center” develop step by step?
A: There is a saying: “The history of Korean industrial design is the history of LG Electronics design.” When founded as an electronics company in 1958, Goldstar – LG Electronics’ former name – was the first in Korea to hire an industrial designer. In 1960, the company launched the first in-house “Industrial Design Team”. After that, Korea’s first radio, washing machine, refrigerator, and telephone of the country were designed, and the scale and status of the Industrial design team were elevated to a whole division and laboratory.
In 1983, the Goldstar Design Center was established after combining design organizations scattered across its business units. This was the company’s first step towards the formation of an independent design organization.
In 2002, it was promoted to the LG Electronics Corporate Design Center, expanding its size and forming what is now its organizational structure. In 2021, we changed its English name to Life Innovation Design Center to promote the value of design when it comes to making customers’ lives better.
The business unit research labs are Home Appliance & Air Solution Design Lab, Home Entertainment Design Lab, Business Solutions Design Lab, and Vehicle Component Solutions Design Lab.
And one design lab doesn’t belong to any business unit as it operates as the HQ in the design center, conducting company-wide UX and user research to ensure our design language and philosophy stay consistent across every product.
The LG Life Innovation Design Center tightly governs its four design labs across the four LGE companies. In this way, LG can deliver designs that share a consistent design language and philosophy to preserve the company’s design identity.
LG’s Design Philosophy and Creative Approach:“LG is a life brand that focuses on the lifestyles of our customers. We pursue innovation that enriches customers’ lives and values people, not innovation for the sake of innovation. Therefore, LG’s design philosophy is ‘Innovation Experienced'."
Q: Could you talk about the core design concept or design philosophy that runs through all LG products?
A: LG is a life brand that focuses on the lifestyles of our customers.
We pursue innovation that enriches customers’ lives and values people, not innovation for the sake of innovation. Therefore, LG’s design philosophy – “Innovation Experienced” – refers to innovation our customers can experience and enjoy in their daily lives. At the same time, it also refers to LG’s rich experience and expertise in innovation.
We believe “Innovation Experienced” can open a life of aspiration, which in turn will provide continuous inspiration in people’s lives. Therefore, we continue to push ourselves to the limit and build on our rich heritage, designing products and experiences to heighten people’s aspirations, and empower people to live the life they dream of.
Images: LG CineBeam 4K UHD Laser UST Projector (HU715Q)
LG CineBeam 4K UHD Laser Ultra Short Throw (UST) Projector boasts 2500 ANSI lumens and sophisticated technologies fit for a 4K high-definition screen. The simple design is reminiscent of compact furniture and the various fabric color options help it seamlessly blend into any surrounding interior design.
Designed with serious movie lovers in mind, LG CineBeam projector projects images ranging up to 120 inches in size (measured diagonally). The well-balanced 40W speakers that suit the large screen are placed on the front to deliver next-level immersion when watching movies.
The Kvadrat wool woven textile covering the front enhances stain resistance and durability while giving a colorful and warm feeling that goes well with the interior.
LG Design’s Social Responsibility:
“We believe that sustainable designs can also provide a lifestyle that adds style and dignity to the home, rather than forcing people to accept discomfort caused by sustainability.”
Q: Could you talk about the green and sustainable design initiatives of the “LG Life Innovation Design Center”?
A: Sustainability in design is no longer an option, it is a necessity. Moreover, we believe that sustainable designs can also provide a lifestyle that adds style and dignity to the home, rather than forcing people to accept discomfort caused by sustainability.
For Sustainable Design, we believe that it is important to implement practices across all processes, from the manufacturing of a product to its disposal at the end of its life cycle.
LG Electronics always strives to provide timeless value with designs that stay in our lives for a long time without feeling old-fashioned. Sustainable designs give users access to replacement parts and regular upgrades to extend the product life cycle while keeping the appliance up to date with the latest technologies.
In the production process, we are considering practical measures to minimize unnecessary decorations and harmful processes and increase the percentage of recycled materials for interior and exterior materials.
Furthermore, we aim to digitalize the printing of boxes and manuals as much as possible while also increasing the use of eco-friendly packaging materials.
ESG design doesn’t happen overnight. That is why we believe that clarifying a consistent direction and implementing practice across various fields is crucial. LG will continue its journey to a more sustainable future with a commitment.