Samsung sees fifth straight record quarter
Q4 earnings hit $8.3bn for mobile phone market leader
Samsung Electronics estimated its Q4 profit as $8.3bn, representing the fifth straight record-breaking quarter for the South Korean mobile phone market leader, Reuters reported.
While the first quarter is traditionally weaker on demand, chip prices have rallied and Samsung's core revenue stream of smartphones remains strong through its strategy of covering multiple price points with a range of products. Last year it flooded the market with 37 products while its main rival Apple managed a single handset launch with the iPhone 5.
As a result, Samsung's sales rate peaked at an estimated 500 handsets per minute and its stock value has reached record heights to bring the company's value close to $230bn.
But concerns remain about Samsung's H1 2013 prospects, with some analysts expecting a slowdown in growth due to a saturated global smartphone market. Despite growth in emerging markets, pessimism remains.
But other analysts predict unit shipments of as high as 320 million (over 600 per minute) smartphones this year and the doubling of Samsung's tablet sales to 32 million.