Samsung has announced its financial results for 2012's fourth quarter, with the world's largest consumer electronics manufacturer confirming that its profits increased by 76 percent during the last three months of 2012.
Profits increased to a record 7.04 trillion won ($6.6 billion), a considerable increase from the 4.01 trillion won it generated during the same period a year earlier.
It represents the fifth consecutive record quarterly profit for Samsung, which also generated fourth-quarter sales of 56 trillion won ($52.6 billion), a 19 percent increase.
Last year, Samsung became the world's largest smartphone maker, subsequently overtaking Apple. Consequently, the Korean firm said its mobile profits have more than doubled during 2012's Q4.
Samsung referred to its Galaxy slate of smartphones and tablets as its top seller, which spearheaded its record profits. The company's handset division enjoyed an operating profit of 5.44 trillion won, an increase from 2.56 trillion won in 2011.
"The furious growth spurt seen in the global smartphone market last year is expected to be pacified by intensifying price competition, compounded by a slew of new products," Samsung said. "In the first quarter, demand for smartphones in developed countries is expected to decelerate, while their emerging counterparts will see their markets escalate with the introduction of more affordable smartphones and a bigger appetite for tablet PCs throughout the year."
The firm didn't provide data on the amount of smartphones it shipped, but analysts believe it sold 63 million units during the quarter. Samsung previously announced that it has sold over 100 million Galaxy S handsets, with the Galaxy S2 and Galaxy S3 exceeding 40 million sales -- the latter device achieved the sales milestone seven months after its launch.
The Galaxy S3 became the world's top-selling smartphone during the third quarter, which was a moniker previously held by Apple's iPhone 4S. Samsung also replaced Nokia as the global market leader in the cell phone market; it's also the market leader for the U.S. handset market.
During the third quarter, Samsung, which sells around a quarter of all mobile phones on the planet, posted a record profit of $7.4 billion. It also sold the most smartphones and phones during the same quarter.