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Samsung Profits, Mobile Division Decline

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Is Samsung on the verge of losing the title of global smartphone leader? Following Apple's record fiscal Q1 2015 the S. Korean giant reports mobile device declines of -64% Y-o-Y for the quarter ending 31 December 2014.

Samsung Such results mark the company's 5th consecutive quarter of mobile device declines, even if it fails to prove sales numbers-- a sharp contrast with iPhone sales reaching 74.5 million during the same period.

"Apple's new iPhone 6 and 6 Plus models are proving wildly popular in China, United States and Europe," Strategy Analytics tells Reuters. "Apple tied with Samsung to become the world's largest smartphone vendor for the first time since Q4 2011."

Other analysts say Samsung's mobile fortunes now lie on the shoulders of its next flagship smartphone, the Galaxy S6, set for launch on March 2015. "I think after learning a hard lesson, we'll see a significant improvement in terms of design, build quality and on the specs," analyst Maybank Kim Eng says. "The question right now is whether this is enough,"

Seen as a whole, the S. Korean conglomerate reports profits worth 5.3 trillion won ($4.9 billion) for Q4 2014, a first annual earnings decline in 3 years for the company. Meanwhile overall 2014 Samsung profits reach 25tr won, down from 36.8tr won in 2013. One bright Samsung spot is the semiconductor division, with healthy system chip, DRAM and NAND sales driven, perhaps ironically, by the smartphone competition, including Apple.

Go Samsung Announces Q4 and FY 2014 Results

Go Samsung's Smartphone Primacy Under Threat from Apple After Weak Q4 (Reuters)