By Joyce Lee

SEOUL (Reuters) - Pre-orders for Samsung Electronics Co Ltd's latest premium smartphone Galaxy Note 8 are the highest among the Note series, the tech giant's mobile chief said on Tuesday.

Samsung is betting on the Note 8 to keep its market dominance as it competes with rival Apple Inc's latest iPhones due to be unveiled later on Tuesday.

The Galaxy Note 8 goes on sale on Friday in the United States, South Korea and other countries.

Samsung, the world's largest smartphone maker by market share, has received positive feedback on the Note 8 following pre-orders from about 40 countries, said DJ Koh, President of Samsung Electronics' Mobile Communications Business.

"Since the August 23 New York unpack, many buyers and partners said the initial response is very encouraging," Koh said at a media event.

Priced at $930 to $960 by U.S. network carriers, including a dialling and data plan, the Note 8 will kick off a new era of premium-priced handsets, which analysts expect to be joined by $1,000-plus iPhones next month.

Apple will hold a "10th anniversary" event later on Tuesday, when it is expected to unveil a special edition iPhone with an edge-to-edge screen and augmented reality that will battle with the Note 8 for pre-holiday sales.

(Reporting by Joyce Lee; Editing by Richard Pullin)