Acquired Electronics360

Mobile Devices

LG KU250 Mobile Phone Teardown

16 March 2008
The following is an overview of a teardown analysis conducted by IHS Technology Teardown Services.

Overview / Main Features

The LG KU250 is a basic 3G UMTS phone with Quad-Band GSM capabilities, based on a Qualcomm MSM6245 chipset. It has a candybar form-factor, a single 1.76 diagonal 262K 176x220 TFT display, a single 1.3MP camera module and features Bluetooth. It also has the same hardware features and major components as the LG KU380 - they are virtually electronic hardware twins (with a few minor differentiators).

Overall - this phone is, at the time of writing, what has really become a mid-market mainstream phone with no particular standout features. Based on LG's press release, this should be a popular phone as it was taken up by many of the world's largest service providers, according to LG.

LG KU250 Mobile Phone Main ImageLG KU250 Mobile Phone Main Image

Target Market

Mainstream users - according to LG, this phone is part of their ""3G for all" initiative / marketing plan to reduce the cost threshold for 3G entry for consumers, per the press release ""….which aims to make third-generation mobile services accessible to a much wider user base."

Release / Availability

Per press release Feb, 2007. Based on LG's press releases their regional focus is based on their relationships with many service providers worldwide, ""Twelve of the largest mobile operators in the world selected the LG-KU250..". Therefore, this device should be available in many areas of the world - however we were only able to find it for purchase in Hong Kong.


Found for as low as $105 USD unlocked in Hong Kong at the time of writing (March 2008).

Volume Estimations

For the purposes of this teardown analysis, we have assumed a lifetime production volume of 0.8M units.

As a reminder, teardown volume production assumptions are primarily used for our cost analysis in terms of amortized NRE and tooling costs, especially for custom components specific to the model being analyzed (mechanical components especially). Unless assumed volumes are different by an order of magnitude, minor changes in volume (say 1 million vs. 2) rarely have a large net effect on our final analysis because of this.

LG KU250 Mobile Phone - Main PCB BottomLG KU250 Mobile Phone - Main PCB Bottom

iSuppli's Design Forecast Tool (DFT) and Market Shares

As part of iSuppli's Design Forecast Tool (DFT), we forecast handset shipments by major design feature and manufacture, as well as the number of design starts a manufacturer will have by feature set.

From our Design Forecast Tool (DFT), we estimate unit shipments of 116 Million WCDMA handsets to ship in the 2008 global market, and we further estimate unit shipments of 301 Million 1 megapixel camera phones to ship in the 2008 global market.

We estimate LG's global unit market share in 2008 to be approximately 7% at the time of writing.

Main Cost Drivers

Qualcomm - MSM6245 - Baseband Processor - Single-Chip, Quad-Band GSM/GPRS, GPS, UMTS & Bluetooth - Qty(1)

Tovis Co. - NM176CN1 - Display Module - 1.76' Diagonal, 262K Color TFT, 176 x 220 Pixels - Qty(1)

Hynix - HYC0UEHOMF3P - MCP - 512Mb NAND Flash, 512Mb Mobile SDRAM, 2.7V/1.8V, Pb Free - Qty(1)

Primary Camera Module - 1.3MP CMOS, 1/4' Format - Qty(1)

LG Electronics - LGIP-531A - Battery - Li-ion - 3.7V - 950mAh - Qty(1)

Qualcomm - RTR6275 - RF Transceiver - ZIF, Quad-Band GSM/GPRS/EDGE Transceiver, Tri-Band UMTS 850/1900/2100MHz Transmitter, Single Band UMTS Receiver - Qty(1)

Secondary Camera Module - VGA, CMOS, 1/7' Format - Qty(1)

Epcos - B30643D5011Q323 - FEM - Tri-Band GSM, Single-Band UMTS SP8T Antenna Switch & 2 SAW Filters - Qty(1)

Qualcomm - PM6650 - Power Management IC - Qty(1)

LG Electronics - 8-Layer - FR4/RCF HDI, 1+6+1 - Qty(1)

Skyworks - SKY77318-12 - PAM - Quad-Band, GSM/GPRS - Qty(1)

LG Innotek - LBRQ-2B43A - Bluetooth Radio - V1.1 & V1.2, Class II - Qty(1)

Total w/ Manufacturing $65.83

LG KU250 Mobile Phone Cost AnalysisLG KU250 Mobile Phone Cost Analysis

What Is Not Included in our Cost Analysis

The total materials and manufacturing costs reported in this analysis reflect ONLY the direct materials cost (from component vendors and assorted EMS providers), AND manufacturing with basic test. Not included in this analysis are costs above and beyond the material manufacture of the core device itself - cost of intellectual property, royalties and licensing fees (those not already included into the per component price), software, software loading and test, shipping, logistics marketing and other channel costs including not only EMS provider and the OEM's margin, but that of other resellers. Our cost analysis is meant to focus on those costs incurred in the manufacture of the core device and exceptionally in some circumstances the packaging and literature as well.

LG KU250 Mobile Phone - Enclosure DisassemblyLG KU250 Mobile Phone - Enclosure Disassembly

Manufacturing Notes

LG Relationships / Manufacturing

Per iSuppli's ""Global OEM Manufacturing and Design Analysis (GOMDA)", we estimate that retained the majority (nearly 97% in 2006) of its handset manufacturing in-house.

Only in recent years did LG start to use a number of Taiwanese ODMs for smart phones and low-cost GMS and CDMA phones.

Country of Origin / Volume Assumptions

This product, as is typically the case from our experience, was labeled as made in Korea. Furthermore, we have assumed that for this model, that the PCB was also populated in Korea, and that custom mechanicals (plastics and metals) were sourced locally as well.

Country of origin assumptions relate directly to the associated cost of manufacturing, where calculated by iSuppli. In the cases of 'finished' sub-assemblies (such as Bluetooth modules), we do not calculate internal manufacturing costs, but rather assess the market price of the finished product in which case country of origin assumptions may or may not have a direct effect on pricing.

Remember also that labor rates are applied directly only to hand inserted components and systems in our bill of materials, and although regional assumptions do, these new rates do not have a direct effect on our modeled calculations of placement costs for automated SMD assembly lines. ""Auto" inserted components (such as SMT components) placement costs are calculated by an iSuppli algorithm which allocates a cost per component based on the size and pincount of the device. This calculation is affected by country or region of origin as well.

Design for Manufacturing / Device Complexity

The LG KU250 has a total component count (less box contents) of 522 components, of which 72 are mechanical in nature - this is at the low-end of most handsets in terms of total component counts, but is logical based on both the form factor and feature set.

Component counts have a direct bearing on the overall manufacturing cycle times and costs, and also can increase or decrease overall yields and re-work. Our calculations of manufacturing costs factor counts and more qualitative complexities in the design.

Note that manual labor has a much smaller effect on auto-insertion assembly lines (for the Main PCB, for example), where manufacturing costs are much more capital equipment intensive and driven by these investment costs.

Design Notes

The design revolves around a Qualcomm MSM6245 chipset (part of Qulacomm's Value Platform) - or basically a near turn-key solution from Qualcomm, as is often the case with phones based on a Qualcomm core baseband chip. This includes the MSM6245 baseband processor, the PM6650 power management chip (found in 90%+ of Qualcomm-based designs we see), and the Qualcomm RTR6275 RF Transceiver. In addition there are Skyworks and Avago in the PAM slots for GSM and WCDMA respectively, and a Hynix NAND/SDRAM MCP in the memory slot.

Overall this is a fairly basic design of limited scope and cost.

Main PCB


Baseband Processor - Qualcomm - MSM6245 - Single Chip, CDMA2000 1X, Quad-Band GSM/GPRS, UMTS, Bluetooth, Integrated QSDO4000 DSP & 180 MHz ARM926EJ-S uProcessor

Battery / Power Management

Power Management IC - Qualcomm - PM6650


MCP - Hynix - HYC0UEHOMF3P - 512Mb NAND Flash, 512Mb Mobile DRAM

RF Transceiver

RF Transceiver - Qualcomm - RTR6275 - ZIF, Quad-Band GSM/GPRS/EDGE Transceiver, Tri-Band UMTS 850/1900/2100MHz Transmitter, Single Band UMTS Receiver

Power Amplifier(s)

PAM(GSM) - Skyworks - SKY77318-12 - Quad-Band, GSM/GPRS

PAM (WCDMA) - Avago - WS2512-TR1G - WCDMA 2100, 1920-1980 MHz

User Interface

Bluetooth Radio - LG Innotek - LBRQ-2B43A - V1.1 & V1.2, Class II


Tovis Co. - NM176CN1 - 1.76' Diagonal, 262K Color TFT, 176 x 220 Pixels

Camera Module

1.3MP, CMOS, 1/4' Format, Fixed Lens


LG KU250 Mobile Phone - Box ContentsLG KU250 Mobile Phone - Box Contents

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