Samsung posts record profits

Samsung Electronics is going through one of its best moments to date, after posting a mind-boggling $4.72 billion profit for the last quarter of 2011.

The results are being attributed to its successful smartphone foray where it has been able to compete toe-to-toe with Apple and its iPhones. It can’t hurt Samsung’s bottom-line that Apple, its main competitor in the smartphone market, is also its greatest client for SoCs and mobile displays for both iPhones and iPads.

Until the move to TSMC takes place, Samsung will be in a very privileged position indeed.

Like a little kid who just received a wad of money from his grandparents, Samsung has already announced it will expand its investment with a further $22 billion thrown at manufacturing and R&D. Three fifths of this will be pumped directly into chip manufacturing.

The company has made no statements about purchasing new technology from competitors such as RIM, or patent portfolios, but would welcome a chance to even the odds against Apple in its Mobile Patent Wars.

With the impending RAM and display sales slump, Samsung will be sitting on enough money to weather the forthcoming storm. Samsung is the only profitable DRAM manufacturer, reports Reuters, but this is likely to change due to oversupply and poor PC sales.

Analysts are expecting Samsung to ship 150 to 170 million smartphones this coming year, a substantial increase of the sub-100 million it shipped out in 2011, while moving into the low-middle end of feature phones – a traditional Nokia stronghold.