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Tech giants roll out budget handsets ahead of flagship releases in H2

All Headlines 08:47 July 10, 2017

SEOUL, July 10 (Yonhap) -- South Korean tech giants are engaging in a fierce competition with mid-end smartphones to grab budget-conscious customers ahead of the launch of their major flagships slated for later this year, industry watchers said Monday.

According to industry sources, LG Electronics Inc. is planning to showcase its mid-end smartphone, the Q6, this week, which can be considered a smaller edition of the flagship G6 released earlier this year.

The Q6 is expected to come with the 18:9 ratio Full Vision display adopted by the 5.7-inch G6 but will come with a smaller screen that's 5.5 inches, the sources said. The new budget device will have a 13-megapixel camera on the back and will be available for around 400,000 won (US$346) to 500,000 won.

Industry watchers said the release aims to maintain sales during the offseason. LG Electronics plan to release its new flagship, the V30, later in the second half.

Last week, Samsung Electronics Co. also kicked off sales of the Galaxy Note FE ahead of the anticipated launch of the Galaxy Note 8 later in the year. The device, which immediately received positive responses from the market, is the refurbished edition of the Galaxy Note 7, whose production was suspended last year due to battery safety.

The Galaxy Note FE comes with major features equipped with the Galaxy Note 7, including the S-Pen, along with Bixby, which was first introduced by the Galaxy S8 smartphones launched earlier this year.

The smartphone, however, does not fully support all features of the Bixby, including the voice recognition system. Users are still able to use other features, including the Bixby Home and Reminder.

Taking the battery issue into consideration, the Galaxy Note FE comes with a battery capacity of 3,200 mAh, which is lower than the 3,500 mAh originally adopted by the Galaxy Note 7.

"The market is currently divided with those wishing for premium models with top-notch features, and those just wishing for basic functions with mid-to-low price," an industry watcher said.

Tech giants roll out budget handsets ahead of flagship releases in H2 - 1

colin@yna.co.kr
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