Due to high demand for its smart TVs, Samsung Electronics is increasing its sales target for flat-screen televisions from 39 million to 50 million units this year.
The world’s number one manufacturer of flat-screen televisions by volume is having a hard time meeting the demand for smart televisions. A small part of that demand is coming from customers looking for 3D TVs, of which the company has only been able to meet 80% of the demand, and recently bumped projected sales for the year up from 2 million to 3 million units.
According to Samsung Electronics Visual Display President B.K. Yoon, there’s no evidence yet that a tumbling Euro has stopped many people in Europe, which accounts for 30% of Samsung’s sales, from purchasing HDTVs.
“The weak Euro may have an impact (on our business) but, if any, that would be only minimal,” Yoon said. “We had already expected such a crisis at the end of 2008, and Samsung has responded to it rather well.”
Samsung expects demand to die down over the next couple of months. The newest smart televisions allow users to surf the Internet through a browser, connect with friends, chat and buy products.
To keep the smart television owners happy, and to keep up with a deal just announced by Sony and Google, Samsung is working on adding some punch to the applications available on the flat-panel TVs. By partnering with local content providers the company is able to offer 120 free applications for Internet-connected TVs in more than 100 countries. Samsung’s partners include Hulu, Blockbuster, Netflix, and Pandora.
Samsung plans to use those local partners to differentiate itself from Google TV.
In an effort to boost the numbers of applications its smart TVs offer, the company held a contest to see who could develop the best application. The winner developed an application that displays children’s e-books in a variety of languages.
According to Yoon, Samsung is looking into developing a HDTV with Google that will run on the Android operating system.