Samsung passes out Apple as world’s top smartphone maker
SAMSUNG has overtaken Apple as the world's top smartphone maker.
In the July-September period it swept into the lead with a 44 pc jump in shipments. And it forecast strong sales in the current quarter in a clear warning to its rivals.
Samsung only entered the smartphone market in earnest last year, but its sales have shot up thanks to a production system that rapidly brings new products to market.
Apple, on the other hand, introduced its first iPhone in 2007.
Apple's iPhone sales shrank by 16pc to 17.1 million units in the third quarter. Samsung had 23.8pc of the global smartphone market in the third quarter, nine points higher than Apple. Samsung's flagship Galaxy line of products is powered by Google's Android software.
And Samsung said its fourth-quarter earnings could be better than the third, boosted by one-off gains from its $1.4bn sale of its hard disk drive business to Seagate Technology.
Says Robert Yi, head of Samsung's investor relations: "I am cautiously optimistic on the fourth quarter outlook at this point."
"Looking ahead into the fourth quarter, when industry demand is traditionally at its peak, Samsung expects sales of mobile devices to remain strong and flat-panel TV shipments to increase."
But Samsung faces challenges as the new iPhone 4S announced earlier this month is notching up strong sales.
The latest Apple phone goes on sale in Ireland today.