Samsung Electronics has announced its earnings guidance for the first quarter of 2013 with an estimate of $7.7 billion (8.7 trillion won) in operating profit and $46.28 billion (52 trillion won) in revenue, Korean’s Yonhap News Agency reports.

Year-over-year, Samsung is tentatively posting a 52.9% increase in profits from its revised 5.7 trillion won showing in the first quarter of 2012. The numbers are, however, a minor 1.6% sequential decline for the company, which posted a record $8.3 billion (8.84 trillion won) in operating profit and approximately $52.4 billion (56.06 trillion won) in the fourth quarter of 2012.

The first quarter was a bit of a seasonal lull for Samsung, which is releasing its flagship Galaxy S4 smartphone in the second quarter.

As we gear up for the just-finished quarter’s earnings season, the big compare is going to be Samsung versus Apple. Last quarter, Apple posted $13.1 billion in profit and $54.5 billion in revenue. Apple is set to announce its fiscal Q2 results on April 23 and Samsung will also finalize its numbers later this month.

Apple passed Samsung to become the top mobile phone maker in the US at the end of 2012, and a recent report from comScore shows the company continued to gain on its rival in the smartphone department, achieving 38.9% market share, compared to Samsung’s 21.3%.