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Samsung edges Apple in phones, alters TouchWiz over patents

updated 08:05 am EDT, Thu October 20, 2011

Samsung to ship 20m smartphones vs Apple's 17m

Samsung will have temporarily outsold Apple to become the top smartphone maker over the summer, a corporate insider leaked on Thursday. The Korean firm was expected by the WSJ to report "more than 20 million" smartphones shipped for the past quarter versus 17.07 million iPhones. The role reversal would have been helped by customers waiting for the iPhone 4S along with strong sales of the Galaxy S II.

The performance, if accurate, won't be corroborated until sometime later. Samsung doesn't usually break out smartphone sales other than for symbolic milestones, leaving analysts to comb through raw data. Apple will have still topped Nokia, which sank to 16.8 million.

Samsung isn't expected to hold the lead during the fall. Many had anticipated a slingshot effect where iPhone sales in the fall made up for any dip in the summer. Apple itself is predicting an all-time high for iPhones and shipped four million iPhone 4S units just in its first weekend, or more phones than Samsung shipped of the Galaxy S II in its first 55 days. Apple's launch day count also didn't include the cheaper iPhone 4 or 3GS units.

Alongside the tip, Samsung's Won-pyo Hong used AsiaD to issue denials that his company had altered the Galaxy Nexus to avoid treading on Apple patents. Work had started on the Android 4.0 hardware before Apple had even begun the legal action, Hong said.

In response to This is my next questioning, however, Hong acknowledged that Samsung had started changing hardware and software to avoid collisions with patents. Samsung had already altered its Galaxy phone apps to continue sales but hadn't mentioned plans for altering the hardware itself. The custom TouchWiz interface in 2012 was also changed and would likely reduce the legal trouble with Apple.

"As the head of a product portfolio, we have multiple different designs -- hardware and UX -- so we can immediately provide other solutions," Hong said.

By Electronista Staff


  1. hayesk

    Professional Poster

    Joined: Sep 1999



    Apple reports numbers sold. Samsung reports numbers shipped. Big difference.

  1. tdknox

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Oct 2011



    If I manufactured 20,000,000 phones and stuffed the channel, I could brag that I "outsold" Apple also. This is pure BS. Nobody cares how many phones you've "shipped". Until they're sold, they don't impact your bottom line. In fact, if you manufacture them and stuff the channel, but they don't sell -- or they sell slowly -- then it will come back to hurt your bottom line.

    Let's see what Samsung's number look like after their next quarterly report.

  1. andrewbw

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jan 2001



    If you read Apple's quarterly report, they only claim shipped numbers for the iPhone 4 as well. This is different than in past quarters when it was number sold. Channel inventory of the iPhone 4 also increased to almost 2 months worth this past quarter, which is also unusual (but hardly a problem).

    Just a hint that it pays to do a little research before you knee-jerk react, regardless of which company you're rooting for.

  1. slapppy

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Mar 2008



    Im surprised by this. Samsung is really winning big vs Apple.

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001



    And we know Apple reports 'sold' phones because we all read their reports. Oh, no, we don't. We just heard someone say it once, and that everyone else in the world lists 'shipped', so we just assume it's always true.

  1. SockRolid

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Jan 2010


    Samsung's last gasp

    "Samsung isn't expected to hold the lead during the fall."

    No S*** Sherlock.

  1. d8thstar

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Oct 2011


    Apple SOLD 17.07 million iPhones in the quarter

    "The Company sold 17.07 million iPhones in the quarter, representing 21 percent unit growth over the year-ago quarter. Apple sold 11.12 million iPads during the quarter, a 166 percent unit increase over the year-ago quarter. The Company sold 4.89 million Macs during the quarter, a 26 percent unit increase over the year-ago quarter."

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