Samsung and LG introduced formidable top-tier handsets this year, so now the two South Korean tech giants are looking to boost their efforts when it comes to the mid-tier segment. The crosstown rivals are reportedly launching new handsets that would rival the budget smartphones of Chinese manufacturers. 

On Friday, South Korean publication Korea Herald revealed that Samsung and LG are looking to appeal to more consumers by releasing affordable handsets that still come with high-end features. The move is seen as the companies’ response to the rapidly increasing offerings of Chinese phone makers that are penetrating many markets including South Korea. 

“Samsung and LG used to make sales plans centering on flagship models but they appear to be changing their strategy by introducing more lineups to appeal to a diverse customer base,” Korea Institute for Industrial Economics & Trade researcher Joo Dae-young said. Industry watchers also predict that the two big companies will give more attention to affordable yet quality smartphones in 2018.

Less than two weeks ago, Samsung announced its new mid-tier phones, the Galaxy A8 (2018) and Galaxy A8+ (2018). The new handsets may be budget-friendly, yet they are sporting the same design elements that Samsung introduced with the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ flagships. 

Both the Galaxy A8 and A8+ come with large Infinity Displays, so they have very minimal top and bottom bezels. They also do not have physical buttons up front. The main attraction is Samsung’s first dual front camera setup comprising a 16-megapixel lens and an 8-megapixel lens. The idea is to provide users with two different options when taking selfies: close-up shots and portraits with clear backgrounds. 

On the other hand, LG is also launching a revamped K10 handset from its budget-friendly K series. Just like the Galaxy A8 and A8+, the 2018 version of K10 also has a special feature. Apparently, it is LG’s first mid-range smartphone to come with LG Pay, the company’s mobile payment service that’s previously exclusive to high-end phones only. The new K10 is also reportedly sporting a 5.3-inch 1920 x 1080p screen. Other specs and features are still unknown at present. 

Sources claim Samsung and LG are going to showcase their new mid-rangers at the upcoming Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2018 this January. The huge consumer technology exhibition is scheduled to happen in Las Vegas, Nevada from Jan. 10–12. However, there will be media press events and conferences days prior, starting on Jan. 7.