Samsung Electronics Co. (KSX:005930), the No. 1 smartphone maker, announced that its fourth-quarter operating profit surged 89 percent to 8.8 trillion won (US $8.3 billion), a new record, mainly because of surging demand for its smartphones.

Formal results are expected to be posted on Jan. 25.

The South Korean giant also said it benefited from demand for products from rival Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), for which it makes chips, components and displays for its iPhone and iPad product line. Samsung’s Galaxy S III phone, introduced in July, became the world's best-selling smartphone in the third quarter, when it sold 18 million units; analysts believe sales were about 15 million units in the fourth quarter.

But sales of the Galaxy Note II tablet, which poses a challenge to the iPad line, were strong, at about 8 million units, the company said. Sales are expected to continue to be strong in the run-up to the new lunar year, which begins next month, the company said.

Shares of Samsung closed at 1.5 million won on Tuesday. They’ve gained 46 percent in the past 52 weeks.