Samsung focusing on touchscreens, confident of growth

Samsung unveiled a new touchscreen phone and said it was confident it would grow its market share despite a contraction in the handset market.

"We are very confident that we will continuously increase our market share not only in advanced countries ... but also in the emerging market," Hong Won-pyo, Samsung's executive vice president of global product strategy for mobile phones, said at a recent press event, according to Reuters. "Smartphones, touch phones and messaging phones--those are three major areas that we are addressing," he said. "That's why we are growing in contrast to the economy."

As for Samsung's intention to boost its global market share from 18 percent to 20 percent, Hong said: "Personally, I'm still confident that we will reach our earlier objective." The company plans to ship around 200 million handsets in 2009.

Hong's comments essentially stand as a line in the sand to Samsung rival LG, which last week said it intends to surpass Samsung by 2012 as the world's No. 2 handset maker. The two companies, both based in South Korea, have a long history of attempting to one-up each other.

Samsung also unveiled a new touchscreen phone, the Jet, which has a 3.1-inch AMOLED touchscreen and runs Samsung's new TouchWiz 2.0 user interface. The device is part of the company's effort to increase its touchscreen offerings; Hong said 30 to 35 percent of the 150 phones Samsung will release this year will have touchscreens.

"Touchscreen is almost now a generic requirement for high-end devices," Hong said. "We might go with touch even with the middle and low end" of Samsung's product range.

For more:
- see this Reuters article
- see this Boy Genius Report post

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