[IFA 2019] LG says ‘anywhere is home’ with AI

By Lim Jeong-yeo
  • Published : Sept 5, 2019 - 17:01
  • Updated : Sept 5, 2019 - 22:45

BERLIN -- LG Electronics on Thursday shared the company’s vision for an AI-powered future where “anywhere is home.”

Park Il-pyung, the company’s president and chief technology officer, spoke at a panel discussion ahead of IFA 2019, outlining LG’s AI vision and saying it went beyond living space, extending also to future mobility and smart cities.

“Evolve,” “connect” and “open” are the three pillars of the vision, Park said, explaining that consumers would soon be able to enjoy maximum comfort through hyperconnectivity no matter where they are.

"Think about what home is to us. It's that space of comfort, your own space, where things are to your liking, nobody else's," said Park.
"Increasingly, we're seeing this description applicable to spaces other than your home. In cars, at office or school, we are able to keep more and more of that homeness through the power of AI."

Some 300 people attended the talk, including guest speakers Dino Flore, vice president of technology at Qualcomm responsible for the company’s 5G strategy across Europe, the Middle East and Africa; Maurice Conti, chief innovation officer of Telefonica’s moonshot factory Alpha; and Ralph Wiegmann, CEO of iF International Forum Design. 

From left: Dino Flore, vice president of technology at Qualcomm, Maurice Conti, chief innovation officer of Telefonica’s moonshot factory Alph and Ralph Wiegmann, CEO of iF International Forum Design. (LG Electronics)

Addressing the audience, Park said LG would expand the product lineup for the company’s AI brand LG ThinQ. Originally, LG ThinQ referred to all of LG Electronics’ AI-equipped home appliances and services. The redefined LG ThinQ will encompass all internet of things devices from the company. With IoT devices and a wireless connection, consumers can also receive cloud-based AI service.

“An AI product grows to know the user better over time. The more you use it, the better it understands you, your preferences, your style and ultimately your feeling, ” Park said. “LG Electronics has developed an original AI chip that is optimally designed for household appliances to self-learn.”

LG is planning to make this chip usable to companies even outside of LG.

Park Il-pyung, LG Electronics’ president and chief technology officer (LG Electronics)

LG’s AI chip imitates the human nervous system. Called the “LG neural engine,” this chip boasts of deep-learning ability that is on-device and can function even without a network. The user’s personal data is safely stored and protected within the chip, according to LG.

“Smart TV, refrigerator, car and building will evolve, connect and open up to each other for users’ better life,” Park said.

“With connectedness, our consumers will feel home-like comfort from anywhere.”

For voice-controlled AI to harness new possibilities, a visual intelligence has to support it, Park stressed, introducing LG’s Vision Pack image sensor linked to the cloud server.

“An LG Styler with Vision Pack can process the clothes hanging inside the smart wardrobe according to textile type and auto-set the best way to care for it,” Park said.

In another example, Park unveiled for the first time LG’s ThinQ Fit, which uses a 3D camera to measure a person’s size and create a virtual avatar that can be brought up on signage screens or mobile devices, so the user can “try on” different clothes without having to physically change clothes. Through connected sellers, users will be able to make online clothing purchases.

To make sure no one misses its 3,799-square-meter booth in Messe Berlin’s Hall 18, LG placed a gigantic 260-piece flexible sign at the entrance that resembled an organic light-emitting diode waterfall.

LG’s iconic OLED rollable TVs are positioned at the very front of the booth. OLED 8K TVs, AI washers and other premium home appliances occupy a special area of the booth put together by Italian architect Massimilliano Fuksas. Visitors can also see a gaming monitor, a beam projector and two new budget smartphones.

IFA is an annual consumer electronics show in Berlin where tech companies from around the world showcase cutting-edge products and solutions. Some 1,800 companies are participating in IFA 2019, including over 100 from Korea.

By Lim Jeong-yeo, Korea Herald correspondent (