Samsung expects Q2 handset shipments to be similar to Q1

Samsung said on Tuesday it expects second-quarter handset shipments to be similar to the January-March period, though smartphones should make up a bigger portion.


Robert Yi, Samsung's head of investor relations, said the South Korean firm shipped 113 million handsets in the first quarter with the proportion of smarpthones in the high 70-percent range. The executive said that smartphones should make up around 80 percent of handset shipments in the April-June quarter.


Samsung's mobile business is poised for an uncertain 2014, analysts say. Its broad range of low-end phones are being caught by the improving quality of Chinese-made offerings, while the large-screen advantage of its top-range phones could be countered by new models from Apple Inc.


Any further decline in profitability could increase pressure from shareholders to produce a new growth engine or increase payouts.


Samsung's flat-screen panels business ran an 80 billion won loss during the January-March period, compared with a 770 billion won profit a year earlier, as weaker global sales weighed on prices.


The company also cited higher costs stemming from an increase in production in China as a reason for the earnings slump in the panels business.



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