Samsung has confirmed it will not launch its Galaxy S III handset at Mobile World Congress 2012 later this month. We had heard that the company originally planned to introduce its S II successor in Barcelona this month, but that the firm had decided to delay the news. Samsung released a statement today confirming our report. "The successor to the Galaxy S II smartphone will be unveiled at a separate Samsung-hosted event in the first half of the year, closer to commercial availability of the product," said a spokesperson.

Although the S II successor won't be unveiled at MWC, we're hearing it will be available "before the summer" which matches Samsung's "first half of the year" event date. Speculation on the announcement delay centers around Samsung's US market plans. Samsung was said to be uncomfortable with another long lag between the global launch and US availability.

Samsung says it will still be introducing and demonstrating "exciting new mobile products" at Mobile World Congress 2012 this month, which could include a Galaxy Tab refresh. We are expecting to hear details about its LTE Windows Phone that was rumored for a CES unveil, and more of its smartphone plans for 2012.

"Samsung is looking forward to introducing and demonstrating exciting new mobile products at Mobile World Congress 2012.

The successor to the Galaxy S II smartphone will be unveiled at a separate Samsung-hosted event in the first half of the year, closer to commercial availability of the product.

Samsung stays committed to providing the best possible mobile experiences for customers around the world.”