Samsung continues to be the high flyer in the smartphone world.
It sold 63 million smartphones in the fourth quarter of last year – 700,000 a day – and posted almost five billion euros profit.
But the South Korean technology giant’s share price slumped 2.5 percent after its latest results were announced as it predicted people would buy fewer smartphones this year.
Samsung also turned cautious on spending for the first time since the global financial crisis.
With the smartphone market slowing and demand for the computer microchips it makes waning, Samsung does not plan to increase the amount it invests in developing new products.
For all of last year Samsung sold 213 million smartphones.
Its share of the market is 30.4 percent, compared with Apple’s 19.4 percent, while Nokia trails with five percent.
Samsung took the number one spot from Apple early in 2102, but the iPhone maker’s problems also impact its rival.
That is because Samsung makes the microprocessors used in the iPhone and iPad.
The fact that Apple is buying fewer of them is one reason why Samsung is now forced to keep a lid on its spending.
It has been one of the industry’s most aggressive spenders, ramping up capital expenditure every year since 2004, with the exception of 2009, to meet soaring demand for its array of consumer electronics and mobile devices.
“Overall its earnings momentum remains intact, and smartphone shipments will continue to grow even in the traditionally weak first quarter, as Samsung has got a broader product line-up and Apple appears to be struggling in pushing iPhone volumes aggressively,” said Lee Se-chul, a Seoul-based analyst at Meritz Securities.
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