It came to be known quite early on that Samsung was going to launch two foldable smartphones in 2020. One would obviously be the successor to the Fold while the other was going to be a clamshell foldable. A device that would look like the flip phones of old while being a completely modern smartphone.
Samsung itself hinted at this possibility during its annual developers’ conference in October 2019. It showed off a concept of how the UI might look like on a clamshell foldable. Fast forward a few months and the Galaxy Z Flip is now a reality. It’s Samsung’s second foldable smartphone but the world’s first with a foldable glass display.
The Galaxy Z Flip folds and unfolds vertically much as the old flip phones did. However, the hinge is much more complex than anything from back in the day. The Hideaway Hinge, as Samsung calls it, actually has nylon fibers inside to prevent dirt and grime from finding its way inside the hinge and under the display. The hinge also allows for Flex Mode, which lets you prop the display at a 90 degree angle for a variety of new use cases. For example, the phone can be placed on a flat surface to take selfie photos or to make a completely hands-free video call.
When folded, the Galaxy Z Flip measures 73.6 x 87.4 x 17.3mm and unfolded it measures 73.6 x 167.3 x 7.2mm. It weighs 183g. There’s a solid metal frame that provides rigidity while an ultra-thin layer of glass protects the foldable display. A dual camera system is present at the back while the physical volume and power buttons are placed on the right frame. The power button doubles as a fingerprint sensor. A USB Type-C port is present at the bottom but there’s no 3.5mm headphone jack.
The Galaxy Z Flip has a 6.7-inch FHD+ Dynamic AMOLED Infinity Flex Display with a quite tall 21.9:9 aspect ratio. It comes with the territory, given its clamshell form factor. The 2636×1080 pixel resolution display has 425ppi and is protected with Samsung’s ultra-thin glass for added durability. The material is much more durable than the polyimide layer that was used for the Galaxy Fold.
That doesn’t mean the display panel doesn’t have a crease in the middle where the hinge does its magic. However, it’s not something that will bother most users, it’s not even as pronounced as it was on the Galaxy Fold. The crease is something that can easily be ignored subconsciously, like notches or punch holes for the front camera.
The Galaxy Z Flip doesn’t have a full-fledged cover display like the Galaxy Fold. Instead, it has a cute little 1.06-inch cover display with 300×116 pixel resolution and Gorilla Glass 6 for protection. The cover display can show the time notifications, battery status and more. It can even be used as a viewfinder to frame photos being taken with the primary camera.
It became clear from the get-go that the clamshell flip phone won’t have flagship-level specs because Samsung wanted to make the device more affordable. It’s going to have respectable specs, just not the top-tier stuff.
The Galaxy Z Flip is expected to be powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 855+ processor. It’s the higher-clocked version of the Snapdragon 855 that Qualcomm launched last year. The chip has a faster “Prime Core” at 2.96GHz compared to the 855’s 2.84GHz.
Not a slouch by any stretch of the imagination. It’s the same chip that Samsung used for the Galaxy Fold that it launched in China as the W20 5G. It’s paired with 8GB of RAM and 256GB of internal storage. No other configurations are available and there’s no microSD slot. Keeping the lights on are two separate batteries with a joint 3,300mAh capacity. There’s also full Samsung Pay support, fast wired charging and Wireless PowerShare. There’s obviously support for wireless charging as well.
The Galaxy Z Flip comes with a dual camera setup at the back which consists of a 12-megapixel f/2.2 ultra wide camera with a 123-degree field of view and a 12-megapixel f/1.8 wide angle camera with Dual Pixel AF and Optical Image Stabilization. There’s also a 10-megapixel f/2.4 camera on the front for all of your selfie needs.
The Galaxy Z Flip comes with Android 10 out of the box and One UI 2.1. It does come with several new software features like Single Take. It’s a new software feature for the camera which utilizes both sensors to capture a variety of photos and videos of a moment to provide you with different Instagram-ready options. The Galaxy Z Flip is also among the Samsung devices that get three Android OS upgrades, so it’s supported until Android 13.
The Galaxy Z Flip was unveiled at Samsung’s Unpacked event on February 11, 2020 in San Francisco. Samsung wasted no time in bringing it to market as the Galaxy Z Flip went on sale in the United States and South Korea merely three days later on February 14, 2020. Its color options include Mirror Purple and Mirror Black with select markets also receiving a Mirror Gold. As part of a high fashion collab, Samsung also launched an exclusive Galaxy Z Flip Thom Browne Edition for $2,480.
Samsung priced the Galaxy Z Flip at $1,380 in the United States. The prices obviously vary slightly depending upon the market but they all fall within the same bracket. Samsung was thus able to deliver a more attainable foldable smartphone in a much-loved form factor.
Downloads and Resources
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