Apple would launch an “iPhone mini” low-end to fight with Samsung

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Strategy Analytics said that the South Korean company will increase its advantage over the Cupertino this year

Samsung Electronics will increase its lead over Apple in global smartphone sales this year, with a growth of 35 percent, said a market research firm Strategy Analytics told Reuters on Friday.

To counter the supremacy of Samsung, Apple could launch a device smaller and cheaper, an “iPhone mini” next year to gain market share pointing to the demand of users ‘smartphones’ in low range , Strategy Analytics said.

“We hope that Samsung extends its lead over Apple slightly this year because of its broader portfolio of products at various levels, “said executive director at Strategy Analytics, Neil Mawston, an email interview with Reuters.

The global smartphone shipments rise 27 percent to 875 million this year, which is lower than last year, which stood at 41 percent. This is because growth is slowing in many key markets such as North America, China, the developed economies of Asia, and Western Europe, said Mawston.

Samsung Electronics plans to sell 290 million “smartphones” this year, compared to a projected 215 million in 2012, said research firm. Sales of Apple’s smartphones will reach 180 million this year, an increase of 33 percent over the previous year, but slightly behind Samsung, you will experience an increase of 35 percent.

This will give Samsung a market share of 33 percent of the market for “smartphones” in 2013, which last year was estimated at 31 percent, while Apple will take 21 percent, versus 20 percent last year.

Mini Iphone

Apple, the company’s most valuable technology world, and Samsung Electronics, Asia’s most valuable, have fought fiercely in the mobile device market in the world, although Samsung is also a supplier of Apple.

Samsung may launch the Galaxy S IV in April, a new version of its “smartphone” badge. It could also launch the Galaxy Note Hybrid III and a number of other new smartphones along this year, as reported by the press and analysts recently.

«Samsung plays in most segments, which should enable it to capture a larger volume than Apple (assuming that Apple will not release a ‘iPhone Mini’ this year),” said Mawston.

The researcher Topeka Capital Markets, Brian J. White, on Wednesday raised the possibility that Apple may launch a smaller iPhone and lower price-to-iPhone Mini further penetrate markets like China and India . White also said in a report that he believed that Apple will launch the next iPhone, the iPhone 5S, in May or June, and thus offer more options with various screen sizes.

This eventually would open the possibility of an iPhone Mini said. But Mawston said the Mini iPhone is not expected to hit the market until later this year.

“We believe that Apple will launch a ‘mini iPhone’ at some point over the next three years to deal with the hundreds of millions of prepaid users worldwide who can not afford the current iPhone, “he said.

“The iPhone 5 is growing rapidly and profitably at this time, so there is little incentive for Apple to release a ‘iPhone Mini’ this year. We expect the iPhone mini comes in 2014, when Apple will be forced to find new trends for growth , “he said.

Samsung Electronics has quickly surpassed Apple as the largest smartphone manufacturer in the world. Its strong sales of smartphones helped lift the company’s stock, which hit a record high of 1,584.000 billion won (1,137 million euros) on Thursday. Its revenues have experienced record profits expected for a fifth consecutive quarter in the fourth quarter from October to December. It is expected to announce the results next week.

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