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LG Electronics returns to 2nd place in U.S. handset market
SEOUL, Jan. 20 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's LG Electronics Inc. regained its spot as No. 2 in the U.S. handset market last month for the first time in a year on brisk sales of its latest smartphones, a research firm said Sunday.

   According to Hong Kong-based Counterpoint Research, mobile phones by LG Electronics recorded a share of 13 percent in December in the United States, beating Apple Inc. with 12 percent. The No. 1 player was retained by Samsung Electronics Co. with 33 percent.

   LG Electronics had maintained the runner-up position until the third-quarter of 2011 but fell to third place after Apple's iPhone 4S hit the market.

   Market insiders attributed LG Electronics' sales growth to the popularity of its latest Optimus G handset, with over 1 million units sold across North America.

   "Optimus G and our other latest smartphones gained popularity in the North American market," an official from LG Electronics said.

LG Electronics' latest Opimus G smartphone. (Yonhap file photo)