Galaxy S4 to spearhead impressive Samsung year, company to sell 390 million smartphones in 2013

by: Chris SmithDecember 24, 2012


Having safely survived the end of the world as we know it – hey Mayans, your calendar app turned out to be pretty buggy by the way – we can look forward at 2013 and what it will mean for the mobile business, and especially for Android.

And we can’t talk about Android in 2013 without mentioning Samsung, which is currently the most successful Android maker out there. In fact, The Korea Times has learned from some sources certain details about Samsung’s plans for next year.

According to the publication, Samsung will ship over half a billion handsets next year, of which 390 million will be smartphones:

“Of the 510 million handsets it plans to sell, 390 million are slated as smartphones and 120 million, feature and budget phones,” according to an executive from one of Samsung’s key suppliers. […]

Another source said that Samsung expects to manufacture 240 million devices at its Vietnamese factory, 170 million in China and 20 million in India to complement the 40 million to be produced in its Korean factory in Gumi, North Gyeongsang Province. [Add all that up and we’re looking at 470 million units.]

Obviously, we’re mostly interested in those 390 million smartphones, because most of them will probably run Android. The online newspaper says that Samsung will also release Windows 8 mobile and TIZEN smart devices next year, but we expect Android to still play a major role in Samsung’s future.

Of course, not all projections are similarly positive, with research firm Gartner having a different view for Samsung’s 2013 handset sales:

The plan contrasts a previous outlook by leading market researcher Gartner, that predicted the Korean firm to sell between 250 million and 300 million smartphones next year. In 2011, Samsung sold 97.4 million smartphones, up from 23.9 million and 0.6 million in 2010 and 2009, respectively.

While the article doesn’t specifically mention Samsung’s 2013 flagship Android smartphone, the Galaxy S4, we expect it to be the most important smartphone in the company’s lineup no matter how many smartphones it ends up selling. The Galaxy S3 is currently the best sold Android device to date with well over 30 million units sold, but we wouldn’t be surprised to see Galaxy S4 beat its predecessor when it comes to sales next year.

As for 2012, the company is expected to sell 420 million handsets this year, with 288 million devices having already been sold in the first three quarters. We’ll learn more about Samsung’s fourth quarter in January when the company will share with the world Q4 financial details.

Are you buying Samsung next year, or will you be waiting for HTC, Motorola (Google), LG and Sony to put up a stronger fight?

  • ijks

    The two companies I’m looking forward to is Samsung and Sony for 2013. The S4 of course and Note 3 are always anticipated and Sony’s high-end phone rumors are keeping me excited.

    • Dave Weinstein

      Don’t forget to keep an eye on ZTE (Nubia Z5), Huawei (their “unannounced” 6.1″ superphone), and Oppo (Find 5).

      There’s lots of great hardware coming out now!

  • Imo the Droid DNA is the first out the box. How much yall wanna bet that this S4 is quad core and 5 inches? Huh huh, any takers?

  • I have a Galaxy SII but I’m waiting for Galaxy SIV off contract with T-mobile 1700 band

  • Nixon

    All I’m waiting for is a Nexus.

    • zymo

      Worth the waiting! I have a N4 and it’s just amazing, especially if you consider its price. Once a Nexus always a Nexus.

      • Dave Weinstein

        Unfortunately, the awesome price is only in the US. The price for a Nexus 4 in Hong Kong is nearly DOUBLE the US price (US$576!)

  • The Note 2 should last me the length of the rest of my contract (about 15 months) and I’m extremely happy with it so unless some truly mind-blowing feature is released on the S4, the Note 3, or the rumored Google Xphone then I don’t plan on buying a device next year with the exception of possibly rejoining the 8+ inch tablet market .

  • Sony Google TV and Motorola Nexus!

  • yungqb7

    I currently own the LG Revolution (rooted of course). My upgrade is near the end of January and I will be waiting for the Galaxy S4 to be released.

  • Lara

    No mention of the s4 anywhere in the article but ‘hey, we need clicks and traffic to our website. Let’s just stick s4 in the title! Yeah!! :D’ write better insightful articles next time instead trying to get traffic to your website. Sisshhhhh!!!

    • On a Clear Day

      My goodness, did we get out of bed on the wrong side today?

      Chris’s article did a recap of the current situation re info about the upcoming year; no one who was being reasonable expected it – from the title – to reveal heretofore untold secrets.

      Nasty, uncalled for reaction Lara.

      • Lara

        I cant be wrong as I’m not the only one who thinks the article could’ve been more useful. And 36 other people agree with me. I wasn’t wrong, there was NO mention of the s4, or my definition of s4 is really wrong – I didn’t know “smartphone” = s4. Could it be implied? No. Interpreted? Yes.

        I’m not nasty, maybe a little blunt in my comment, perhaps, but not nasty. And if you think I was, well then, I wish you luck with life, buddy. There are a lot more nastier things and people that you’re probably blind to.

        One more thing, at least use your real name if you’re going to rebuke me.

  • Since i have the sgs3, i think i’ll wait for the s5 or 6. They will come, won’t they? Or maybe give Nokia another chance to dissappoint me.

  • I’m waiting for HTC deluxe or what ever it will be called in the UK. HTC do it fist then everyone copies.

    • George

      Their execution is typically not up to the mark though. The sensation was a disaster against the galaxy s2. The one x couldn’t stand up to the s3.

      And the exynos 5 is a generation ahead of the Qualcomm krait SOCs. But let’s see how it turns out. :-)

    • cycad007

      I’m with you…especially if HTC adds an SD card slot & removable battery. Love their build quality and I actually enjoy Sense! However, if an HTC device goes Nexus…then I’m jumping on top of that! :-)

  • Dave Weinstein

    I’m a bit frustrated with Samsung. They’ve built some excellent hardware, but they abandoned all the Note (1) customers when the Note 2 came out.

    They know full well that EVERY carrier is on a 24 month subsidy schedule, but they cut off software updates after 12 months to pressure us into buying a new device every 12 months completely unsubsidized.

    They’ve burned a bridge with me. I’m going to be sticking to Nexus (and AOSP) devices in the future. Too bad really, with Apple’s horrible behavior there was a real opportunity to be the “good guys”, and they seem to be trying their hardest to squander that. Oh well.

    • seems to me in your case Samsung are the ones misbehaving…

      • Dave Weinstein

        Ummm… yes. I said that I’m unhappy with Samsung’s policy of abandoning support after 12 months. I also said that I’m unhappy with them lying with claims that they are “working on updates”. I didn’t say anything about Apple, other than implying that they are far worse than Samsung. Yet you seems to be implying that Apple should chalk up a “win” from my comment.

        There are choices beyond these two companies. I’m choosing to “vote” economically and put my money and voice behind Google and pick a manufacturer that sticks closely to the original Google AOSP sources, and also make timely software updates.

  • chris pinkston

    Probably stick with my LG Optimus G..unless the s4 just blows me away next year. If not the snapdragon s4 pro I’m using now should well for the next year

  • vinay sachdeva

    Love to see how samsung will perform against Apple in 2013. Meanwhile, here is something useful that I found today that relates to Galaxy S4, Check it out.

    • Dave Weinstein

      You’re hyping your own competing website without disclosing it?

      Probably some automated process making comments when the subject contains “Galaxy S4″…

      Bad form.

  • just wondered how many of those 390M phones are running jelly bean

  • l Pray JOBS IS Rotting In hell