Samsung Electronics Co Ltd, the world's second-biggest maker of mobile phones, expects to sell up to 25 million smartphones this year, exceeding its earlier target, the company said on Friday. JK Shin, head of Samsung's Mobile Communications division, was quoted as saying at the IFA trade show in Berlin that its 2010 smartphone sales would be far higher than its original target of 18 million units, due to the popularity of its Android-based Galaxy S model. “Our smartphone shipments will easily surpass 20 million units this year, thanks to strong sales of recently released Galaxy S … We expect the number could rise to as high as 25 million this year,” Shin was quoted as saying by news provider EDaily. A spokesman for Samsung confirmed the comment was made to Korean reporters. “Galaxy S seems to be off to a good start. The 25 million is achievable,” said analyst Neil Mawston from Strategy Analytics. “It's clear that the smartphone onslaught from Samsung has arrived and they are really starting to ramp up the pressure,” Mawston said.

The 25 million figure for sales would lift the Korean company to fourth position in the global smartphone rankings — behind Nokia, RIM and not far behind Apple . Samsung had a 4.8 percent market share last quarter, according to research firm IDC. EDaily also quoted Shin as saying the company had targeted sales of 50 million units for next year. Samsung, which had said earlier it would treble smartphone sales this year to 18 million units, in June unveiled Galaxy S, its answer to Apple's popular iPhone and its first smartphone sold globally through some 100 carriers, and sold more than 3 million sets. “Galaxy S is definitely opening the smartphone sector for Samsung Mobile … It's overperforming our expectation,” YH Lee, head of marketing at Samsung Mobile, told Reuters in Berlin on Thursday.

Samsung, a laggard in the booming smartphone market, does not plan to introduce new models to replace Galaxy S during the hot holiday season later this year, hoping for strong sales of the model to continue. But some investors are concerned that a lack of next line-up may hit the company as rivals prepare to introduce upgraded models. Shin also said the company aims to sell 1 million units of its new tablet PC Galaxy Tab this year, local reports said. Samsung unveiled the 7-inch, Android-based tablet PC at the IFA event to challenge Apple's hot-selling device iPad.

Tags: ,