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Samsung: Galaxy S3 sales to surpass 30 million this year

Apple, take note:The latest Galaxy class phone will add more than 10 million to its current sales number, says a top Samsung exec.

Lance Whitney Contributing Writer
Lance Whitney is a freelance technology writer and trainer and a former IT professional. He's written for Time, CNET, PCMag, and several other publications. He's the author of two tech books--one on Windows and another on LinkedIn.
Lance Whitney
2 min read
Samsung's Galaxy S3.
Samsung's Galaxy S3. Samsung

Samsung believes its Galaxy S3 is on its way to more than 30 million in global sales by year's end, according to a report from the Yonhap News Agency.

Samsung's IT and mobile unit chief Shin Jong-kyun announced the forecast to reporters today at the company's offices in Seoul. This tidbit comes on the heels of news that Samsung sold 20 million Galaxy S3 phones in the 100 days since its debut in May.

Shin also touted Samsung's new Galaxy Note 2, which was on display at last month's IFA trade show. Sales of the 5.5-inch "phablet" should be more than double that of the original Galaxy Note's 10 million, Shin said. The new Note is slated to reach consumers next month.

Global smartphone shipments in general are expected to reach 567 million this year and almost double in 2016, according to NPD DisplaySearch. And at least some of this year's growth will be driven by Apple's new iPhone, likely to be unveiled today.

"Apple's iPhone 5 will be a key product for the smartphone market in [the second half of 2012]," NPD DisplaySearch analyst Hiroshi Hayase said in a statement. "Apple shipped more than 140 million phones in 2010 and 2011, so we can expect smartphone shipments to continue flourishing as users upgrade to the new iPhone."

NPD DisplaySearch

Still, the number of new smartphone shipments may be lower than originally anticipated.

NPD DisplaySearch now expects shipments of 177 million this year, down from its earlier forecast of 220-230 million. The U.S. smartphone market in particular has become more saturated, according to a recent NPD report, which found that U.S. smartphone sales inched up just 9 percent in the second quarter. And much of that growth came from prepaid phones.

But the number of replacement phones should rise as new smartphones debut.

"The timing of mobile phone contracts can also impact the smartphone market," Hayase said. "More service providers are likely to shorten mobile phone replacement cycles in an effort to boost sales."

Tune in Wednesday starting at 9 a.m. PT for our Apple iPhone event live blog.

Chiming in on the iPhone 5, NPD DisplaySearch expects the new model to sport a 4-inch screen, offering a display of 326 pixels per inch and a widescreen format of 1136x640 pixels. In-cell touch technology will integrate the touch sensor into the display panel, resulting in a thinner display. The research firm also believes Apple will use the extra space for a larger battery that requires fewer recharges.