Samsung has announced its fifth consecutive record-breaking quarter driven by strong sales of Galaxy devices, improving chip prices and increased demand for smartphone displays. The South Korean company's operating profit rose a whopping 89 percent to 8.8 trillion won ($8.3 billion), on revenue of 56 trillion won ($52.87 billion) during the three months ended December.
Samsung sold about 62 million handsets in the quarter, compared with Apple’s 45 million, according to estimates reported by Bloomberg. Shipments of the flagship Galaxy S III made up for about 15 million of those sales while the Galaxy Note II added another 8 million. Some 35 other phone variants adjusted to regional and consumer tastes pushed the overall shipments figure to record heights.
By comparison, Apple introduced just a single new smartphone last year globally, although the company also sells older generation iPhones alongside the flagship model to compete in other price brackets. Taiwan's HTC released 18 handset models, Nokia released nine and LG Electronics introduced 24.
Samsung is expected to increase its smartphone sales by more than a third this year to somewhere between 290 million and 320 million units depending on who you ask. A good chunk of that will likely come from the S III sucessor. Details on the Galaxy S IV are sparse at the moment, but rumors point to a high resolution display with 440 ppi as well as a 13MP rear camera and the latest Exynos 5 processor.