Despite making the most explosive phone of the year, Samsung is projecting a record profit of about $10.4 billion for the fourth quarter of 2016, on the back of $61 billion in consolidated sales for the quarter. Those figures are big, but they’re even more notable for being the highest of the past three years; Q4 2015 was 23% lower than this year. A huge growth for Samsung. Huge.
Samsung success draws into sharp relief the relative failure of LG’s mobile division in 2016. Heading into the end of the year, LG’s profits declined a full 50% due to a $554m loss across their mobile division. Revenue rose to $16.6bn, but an overall loss of around $40m is expected for Q4.
This stands as LG’s biggest loss since Q4 2010, which analysts are blaming on a combination of declining sales in mobile as well as weaker appliance sales and lower TV profits.
Will we see a turn of fortune in 2017? LG must certainly be hoping so, and with the lessons hopefully learned in 2016, the year ahead looks promising, and may well be defining for LG’s mobile business.