Samsung CEO J.K. Shin walks onstage during the presentation of the Galaxy S6 smartphone at the Samsung Galaxy Unpacked event before the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain, March 1, 2015. Reuters/Albert Gea

Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. has received initial orders from carriers that show its latest flagship smartphones -- the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge -- may just be hits in the marketplace, helping it begin a turnaround necessitated by the comparatively lackluster performance of the Galaxy S5, the Korea Times reported.

After Samsung gave the handsets their debuts at the Mobile World Congress exposition in Barcelona, Spain, this month, the company has received preorders for 20 million units, a top executive at a leading mobile carrier in Europe told the media outlet. Describing this figure as a “record” for preorders of such devices, the exec said it broke down this way: 15 million for the Galaxy S6, and 5 million for the Galaxy S6 Edge.

The Korea Times also cited Samsung CEO J.K. Shin as saying the response to the S6 models is far better than it was to the previous model, with “really huge” preorders.

By way of comparison, Apple Inc.’s iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus models saw first-day preorders of 4 million in the U.S., Reuters reported Sep. 15, and sales in the first three days after launch ratcheted up to 10 million units, Apple said Sept. 22.

In China, carriers and the online-commerce site JD.com together had 20 million preorders for the iPhone 6 models, MacRumours reported Oct. 13, three days after the phones went on sale there.

Samsung has garnered positive reviews for its new smartphones’ features, including their overall design, wireless charging and one of the best camera experiences ever offered by the company, traditionally known for its good cameras and organic light-emitting diode displays. Reviewers also like the dual-curved screen on the Edge model.

Strong sales of the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge would help Samsung regain some of the sheen it lost as a maker of premium handsets after Chinese customers went wild over the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus released by the American Apple last year. The South Korean company saw its profit drop sharply in 2014, for the first time since 2011.

And in rapidly growing markets such as India, Samsung has seen both local and Chinese competitors cut into its market share at the lower end of the price band, while Apple’s allure is rising at the higher end.

According to the Korea Times, the Netherlands was the first country with preorders for Samsung’s new smartphones. Without contracts there, the Galaxy S6 with 32 gigabytes is priced at €700 ($742) and the Galaxy S6 Edge is priced at €850 ($900).