Sales of the Galaxy S, Samsung Electronics Co.'s biggest bet on the smartphone market, broke the 500,000-unit mark in South Korea on Monday, about one month after it was rolled out here, SK Telecom Co. said. SK Telecom, South Korea's top mobile carrier that provides the smartphone, said the sales record was set faster than that of any other
mobile phone. The landmark figure comes amid the delay in the iPhone 4's local release.
Since its domestic debut June 24, the Android-based Galaxy S has been the focal point of Samsung Electronics' mobile marketing. The world's No. 2 mobile phone maker by shipments, behind only Finland's Nokia Corp., Samsung is counting on the Galaxy S to revive its falling handset margins and gain a bigger piece of the lucrative smartphone segment.
South Korea's smartphone boom began belatedly, following the success of the iPhone, which debuted in November 2009.
But the market has expanded quickly since then, inviting more handset manufacturers to compete in the mushrooming market. South Korea's smartphone
market is projected to reach 4.8 million this year, according to IDC Korea.
Sales of the iPhone 3GS topped 850,000 units as of mid-July, about eight months after the local release, according to Apple Inc.'s sole local
contractor, KT Corp. But the launch of the next model, iPhone 4, in South Korea has been postponed for a couple of months, according to the No. 2
mobile carrier KT, giving iPhone wannabes a chance to gain ground.
The iPhone 4, whose sales topped 3 million globally in about three weeks of its launch, will be offered in 17 more countries at the end of July.
Apple and KT have not disclosed the exact dates of the South Korea launch.