Samsung Galaxy S8 sales highlight speed of recovery

Samsung Electronics’ latest flagship Galaxy S8 smartphone has hit 1m in domestic sales twice as quickly as its predecessors, highlighting the speed of the company’s recovery from last year’s costly Galaxy Note 7 recall. The South Korean company has pinned its hopes on the new premium device, which went on sale on April 21, to repair its image after the demise of the fire-prone Note 7 and stage a comeback in the competitive global smartphone market.  The Galaxy S8 has been well accepted in Samsung’s home market, luring consumers with its cool bezel-less design and upgraded features including its Bixby voice assistant. “Samsung must be glad that the new phone has not caused any big trouble like the Note 7 battery problem. There seems to be no worry about its quality,” said Kim Young-woo, analyst at SK Securities.  However, the phones are not selling as well abroad as in the domestic market, Mr Kim added. “Its domestic performance is very good while its overseas sales have been similar to those of its predecessors. There seem to be many consumers overseas waiting for the new iPhone launch,” he said.  The S8 is on sale in the US, South Korea and parts of Europe, and analysts said this month that Samsung had sold 5m units globally in the three weeks after its launch. The company did not deny the industry estimate, but declined to comment. The new flagship device, which is being gradually rolled out to about 150 countries, had been expected to outsell its predecessor S7, which shipped 48.5m units in its first year. But Mr Kim now projects S8 global sales of about 45m this year, with momentum likely to be sapped by the expected launch of the new iPhone in the second half. He estimates the S8 has now sold about 8m units globally since its late-April launch. Related article Samsung Galaxy S8 review — usable and downright beautiful Smartphone is slick but some software lags behind rivals Although Samsung remains the world’s largest mobile phone maker, its market share slipped to 20.7 per cent in the first quarter from 23.3 per cent in the same quarter last year, according to Gartner. It was also the only top-five phonemaker to report a decline in shipments, which fell to 78m from 81m, hit by the Note 7 setback and stiff competition in the Chinese market, in particular.  However, the company posted its best quarterly operating profit in more than three years in the first three months of this year, buoyed by solid component sales. Analysts expect Samsung to report about Won50tn in operating profit for 2017, with about 70 per cent of it coming from memory chips and display panels. Shares in Samsung, which have risen some 30 per cent year to date, fell 1 per cent to Won2.281m on Monday.

[Source:- ft]