Samsung Electronics has reported third-quarter earnings that show sharp declines year-on-year due to the ongoing slow performance of the global memory chip market, which had been the company’s biggest profit driver. In other areas, however, Samsung is doing pretty well.
Overall, the company made 62 trillion won (~$53 billion) in revenue and 7.78 trillion won (~$6.71 billion) in operating profit, year-on-year drops of 5 and 56 percent respectively. But the mobile business alone posted revenue of 29.25 trillion won (~$25 billion), up 17 percent, with profit rising 32 percent to 2.92 trillion won (~$2.5 billion). Profit is also slightly up at the display panel business.
Samsung says the improved mobile earnings were due to strong sales of the Galaxy Note 10 and A-series phones, as well as managing to achieve better margins on more mass-market devices. Samsung doesn’t break out individual sales figures, but specifically says the Note 10 is selling better than the 9. The display business did well in selling small and mid-sized OLED panels, offsetting weaker performance in TV-sized screens; Samsung’s own TV business posted a year-on-year earnings decline.
In 2020, Samsung expects 5G and foldable phones to further contribute to its bottom line. Until demand for memory picks up, however — and it’s far from certain that it will — the days of the company routinely posting record profits every quarter are unlikely to return.
Vox Media has affiliate partnerships. These do not influence editorial content, though Vox Media may earn commissions for products purchased via affiliate links. For more information, see our ethics policy.