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Smartphone strategy sees Samsung power past Apple

Samsung has predicted it will register a record profit for the last quarter, as its catch-all approach to smartphone production continues to reap rewards.

The South Korean firm expects its operating profit for October to December 2012 to hit 8.8 trillion won, which equates to around £5.1 billion. Much of the company’s success is being attributed to its mobile sales, with Reuters reporting that the Koreans shift nearly 500 handsets every minute.

Samsung, now valued close to $230 billion, appears to be benefitting from the quantity as well as the quality of phones it is shipping. The capabilities of its flagship Samsung Galaxy S3 and Galaxy Note 2 smartphones are well documented, but the fact that the firm threw 37 different handset variants into the mobile arena last year, including low-end models and specially adjusted handsets for different regions, has enabled its phone branch as a whole to maintain considerable momentum.

Apple’s policy of sticking with improvements to a single handset may help keep the prestige of the iPhone, but releasing just one mobile device in 2012 has seen it lose ground to Samsung in the sector.

HI Investment & Securities analyst Song Myung-sub told Reuters that the same pattern in 2013 will strengthen the status quo. “For the whole year, Samsung will launch new models faster than Apple and have the upper hand in the smartphone market," he said.

Myung-sub forecasted a profit wane for Samsung in early 2013, but hinted that the successor to the Galaxy S3 may reignite fortunes once again. "Samsung's profit will drop in the current quarter because of decreased phone profits,” he commented. “It will launch the Galaxy S4 only in March or April so, without new models, phone sales prices will fall this quarter.”

With excitement already building over the forthcoming Samsung Galaxy S4, James Laird today rounded up the latest rumours and leaks surrounding the phone.