Samsung Electronics on Tuesday published its consolidated financial report for the second quarter of the year, revealing a decline in revenue and confirming a number of recent reports about weak sales of the Galaxy S9 lineup of Android flagships. The company recorded a $52.1 billion turnover, four percentage points down year-on-year, though it became more profitable, with its second-quarter bottom line being $13.3 billion in the black, up six-percent annually. While no specific figures have been attached to the commercial performance of the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus, Samsung attributed the weak sales of its flagships to an overall decline in the premium smartphone market and increased competition.
The Seoul-based manufacturer confirmed the poor reception of the Galaxy S9 series prompted it to launch the Galaxy Note 9 earlier than usual, with the high-end phablet being set to be unveiled on August 9 in New York City. Samsung is hoping the early introduction will revitalize its sales in the premium smartphone market, a segment that offers by far the best margins in the mobile industry. While not many details about the device itself have been provided, the firm told investors the Galaxy Note 9 will have "a reasonable price." Recent rumors suggested the handset will start around $960, much like last year's Galaxy Note 8 did.
The technology juggernaut also attributed its revenue drop to a decline in display panel sales which may be related to the weaker-than-expected commercial performance of Apple's iPhone X which uses a Samsung-made OLED module. Semiconductor demand is still high and is offsetting minor drops in other areas, whereas the recently concluded FIFA World Cup also boosted the company's TV sales. The firm said it will soon be improving the operating efficiency of its smartphone manufacturing lines, giving more credence to recent reports claiming it contracted more Chinese mobile component suppliers this year, possibly with the goal of passing some of its savings to consumers and improving its competitiveness in the mid-range and entry-level handset segments where many rivals from the Far Eastern country have been undercutting it for years.