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    Samsung’s €1500 phone feels more premium than its €2000 foldable

    Opinion
    By 

    Last updated: January 29th, 2024 at 15:17 UTC+01:00

    Most people have this subconscious feeling that if something costs more, it's probably of a higher quality. That may be true in some cases but we understand that it's rarely the case when it comes to tech, as there are far more factors at play here. However, it's not uncommon to end up being pleasantly surprised by the more affordably priced option.

    Someone who doesn't follow tech for a living would probably feel that the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 that costs €2000 or thereabouts, is a lot more premium than a device that costs less. If they were to compare it with the ~€1500 Galaxy S24 Ultra, Samsung's latest flagship, they'd think that last year's foldable would obviously feel more premium.

    I've shifted to the Galaxy S24 Ultra after using the Galaxy Z Fold 5 as my daily phone ever since it came out last year and I can confidently say that people will be pleasantly surprised by the newest Galaxy S flagship. It's a bit paradoxical but the more expensive Galaxy Z Fold 5 doesn't feel like it lives up to its €2000 potential in comparison to the Galaxy S24 Ultra which seems to punch above its €1500 price tag.

    This impression primarily comes down to durability that's something you can sense when you're using high-end devices. This is what I noticed immediately after using the Galaxy S24 Ultra, that while the Galaxy Z Fold 5 might be more expensive, it doesn't feel nearly as solid as the newest kid on the block. That's not to say the Galaxy Z Fold 5 isn't great, it's just that the Galaxy S24 Ultra is noticeably better.

    To me, just the way the Galaxy S24 Ultra feels in the hand is next level. To be fair, I didn't have high expectations after using the Galaxy S23 Ultra last year. I felt that last year's flagship had potential that wasn't fully realized whereas the Galaxy S24 Ultra raises the bar higher than it has ever been for this lineup. Yes, granted, the Titanium finish of the Galaxy S24 Ultra does play a role in this.

    It's not ideal, though, that a lower priced flagship steals the the spotlight from Samsung's most expensive device, particularly when the company is on a mission to significantly grow the sales of its foldable smartphones. So what options does Samsung have here? We already know that Samsung's focus with its foldable line isn't to create the thinnest or sleekest devices. It's all about durability, and rightly so, because Samsung needs to convince customers to take a chance on this new form factor.

    Samsung is doing incredible work in making the foldable category strong and reliable. That's contributing to the company's rising sales of foldables. Samsung needs to stay on this path to achieve its goal of exponentially increasing the share of foldables in its total smartphone sales. In my opinion, Samsung needs to strike a balance between its focus on durability and the physical sensation of holding and using its next flagship foldable.

    It should just keep everything it has done to elevate the Galaxy S24 Ultra's look and feel in mind and try to replicate that feeling for the Galaxy Z Fold 6. Yes, the display isn't going to feel the same because of the form factor, but it shouldn't be that difficult to replicate a similar feeling for the device's shell.

    In doing so, Samsung should ideally bring the Titanium finish to this year's flagship foldable phone. Despite the heavy coating, Titanium does lend a softer and more comfortable feel to the device. That, coupled with some design changes that deliver a more boxy foldable phone, might just be the secret to the Galaxy Z Fold 6′ success.

    One can excuse the glaring differences between the look and feel of the Galaxy S24 Ultra compared to the Galaxy Z Fold 5 given that they represent different generations in Samsung's lineup. The difference is significant and I hope that Samsung closes that gap when the Galaxy Z Fold 6 is ultimately released in the second half of this year, otherwise, it would be a missed opportunity.

    Samsung, please keep it simple, focus on durability and enhancing the physical sensation. Keep the Galaxy S24 Ultra beside the designers as they work on the new foldable if you have to, just make sure the weave that same magic again.

    Opinion Galaxy S24 UltraGalaxy Z Fold 5Galaxy Z Fold 6 Time's running out on the best Galaxy S24 Ultra deals!

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