The Galaxy Z Flip’s foldable glass screen already blows me away (sorry, Motorola Razr)

The Galaxy Z Flip’s 6.7-inch foldable glass display screen stands up by itself.

Angela Lang/CNET

Wow. I’ve simply completed utilizing the Galaxy Z Flip, the foldable flip phone Samsung introduced on Tuesday in San Francisco, and I can already say that this phone is one thing particular. I do know, I do know, I say that about all of the foldable phones I take advantage of for the primary time. Each is exclusive, and appears to construct off the final. But the $1,380 Galaxy Z Flip has two necessary distinctions that blow me away — and that sign that the $1,499 Motorola Razr is in bother.

The each come all the way down to the display screen’s sturdiness and adaptability. The Z Flip has the world’s first foldable glass display screen and the highest of the phone can arise by itself at most angles. It does’t damage that the Z Flip’s display screen does not audibly creak once you open it. I attempted that out on three totally different demo items. 

Compared to the Razr, the Z Flip additionally prices $119 much less and packs in additional options — like two 12-megapixel cameras and a 10-megapixel inside digicam, reasonably than the Razr’s single 16-megapixel lens.

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Galaxy Z Flip is the primary phone with foldable glass


The Galaxy Z Flip goes on sale Feb. 14 in Mirror Purple (yasss), Mirror Black and in choose international locations, Mirror Gold. That glass physique actually is mirrored, too — these fingerprints construct up quick. It’ll value $1,380 within the US and £1,300 within the UK. Australian pricing is TBA, however the worth converts to $AU 2,054.

Read on for what it is like to make use of the Galaxy Z Flip, how the hinge works and all the professionals and cons I seen in my 40 minutes utilizing the clamshell foldable to date (10 minutes in a single demo room and 30 in one other).

Z Flip’s glass display screen may very well be killer

Samsung demos the Galaxy Z Flip on stage at Samsung Unpacked.

GIF by Mike Sorrentino/CNET

What’s it like to make use of a foldable glass display screen, as a substitute of a plastic show?

It could be too quickly to inform, however I instantly seen that the display screen crease regarded much less pronounced than I’ve ever seen it. I may nonetheless see gentle reflecting off of it on the bend, and will really feel a slight dip after I ran my fingertip intentionally over the midline. It’s actually extra refined than on the Galaxy Fold.

I tapped the glass too, and listened, however did not hear that telltale clink. Must be as a result of it is ultrathin. Navigation felt clean in my temporary time with the system, and so did the floor.

Since the very first first peep about foldable telephones, glass has been the holy grail of foldable screens: Thin sufficient to fold with out breaking, however offering a more practical protect to the fragile OLED show beneath than a sheet of plastic. 

The hope is that an ultrathin foldable glass may even deflect scratches and water injury. The query we nonetheless need to reply is that if and the way it will break once you inevitably drop it.

An enormous deal: The display screen stands up by itself

In addition to foldable glass, the Z Flip’s second distinction is the truth that the hinge is sturdy sufficient for the display screen to face upright by itself with out slowly closing or opening. 

I pushed and pulled the higher portion of the display screen at each angle from the bottom, and it wasn’t till the very backside or very prime of that arc that the phone both opened totally or else snapped shut, assisted by magnets on the corners.

A self-supporting display screen has been excessive on my listing because the first foldable phone prototypes we have seen, particularly for those who can view a picture or video on the highest portion whereas typing or doing one thing else on the underside. On a taller, narrower design just like the Z Flip, you will get the comfort of watching a video hands-free, although the clip itself will really feel pocket-size in comparison with the 7.3-inch Galaxy Fold, which you’d watch completely unfolded.

Samsung has additionally partnered with Google (particularly YouTube) to make its app cut up into two parts when the Z Flip bends. The thought is to look at YouTube movies on the higher display screen whereas studying feedback on the underside. I wasn’t capable of check this, as a result of YouTube wants an replace for that to work, however I used to be capable of see the impact on the digicam app. A row of controls seems on the underside and the picture retreats on the highest. 

We’ll want extra apps to reap the benefits of the potential to see how properly it really works in the true world.

How lengthy will the Z Flip display screen actually final?

Samsung says the Galaxy Z Flip’s display screen will final 200,00Zero flips with out injury, or about what you’d get after 5 years of use. This determine speaks to the damage and tear on the display screen and hinge ensuing from opening and shutting the system repeatedly.

That’s the identical rated variety of makes use of because the Galaxy Fold, which CNET examined final October on a machine known as the FoldBot. That check, which was meant to be an approximation and never a scientific ultimate phrase, lasted for 120,000 folds. Meanwhile, the Motorola Razr lasted just 27,000 folds on the identical machine. (CNET features a disclaimer concerning the outcomes and Motorola has likewise issued a press release to problem the FoldBot’s outcomes.)

All of that is to say that we do not know but how lengthy it’ll actually final in the true world, or much more importantly, what sort of environmental injury from water, moisture, mud, sand and unusual objects like fingernails and keys the display screen and hinge mechanism can maintain. We do know that Samsung has included fibers contained in the hinge space that may work like nostril hairs to assist lure or filter out mud and particles.

Galaxy Z Flip

A better take a look at the Z Flip’s glass show and crease.

Juan Garzon / CNET

Little hazard of repeating Galaxy Fold errors

The Z Flip’s glass display screen is anticipated to bypass the Galaxy Fold’s greatest early vulnerabilities, like injury resulting from stress. But the Z Flip additionally avoids confusion as a result of there isn’t any hole between the thick plastic bezel and the display screen for a fingernail to slip into (or any mud).

Samsung additionally carried over the plastic T-caps (as I name them) that match into the edges of the hinge. The objective of those is to bolster the realm, which may very well be extra prone to gunk getting caught beneath the show and inflicting bulges or inside injury. This is a carry-over from the Galaxy Fold redesign.

What the outer display screen is sweet for

Probably 95% of the time, you will use the Z Flip open. That’s as a result of the duvet show is a mere 1.1-inches on the diagonal. That does not offer you a lot room for something however the smallest notification icons that roll out ticker messages once you faucet them. You’ll see issues like a Wi-Fi icon, a missed name and different notifications, and the alarm. 

You can even use it as a viewfinder for taking a selfie, or faucet a button on the within for another person to see their face earlier than you snap the shot. It simply appears too small, squat and broad to actually be efficient.

I assumed the Motorola Razr’s 2.7-inch outer show was tiny, nevertheless it not less than lets you choose canned message responses and use voice instructions. The Galaxy Fold, in the meantime has a 4.6-inch cowl show that permits you to do all the things that Android can do, however which is simply too small to comfortably sort on. I by no means thought I’d miss it.

Galaxy Z Flip

There’s a tiny air hole concerning the width of a pair enterprise automobiles or a bank card. You can see the sunshine by means of it, however total, that is a formidable achievement for foldable glass.

Juan Garzon / CNET

Camera, battery life, fingerprint reader

Forty minutes is not a very long time to check out a tool, so I did not get a lot likelihood to take pictures and analyze them. But I do like that the Z Flip has two primary cameras. I wind up utilizing wide-angle mode greater than I ever anticipated. It’s particularly helpful for making selfies look extra pure, and for bringing backgrounds into the scene.

Battery life can be one thing I’ll maintain a detailed eye on. The Z Flip has two battery cells that work in tandem to fill a 3,300mAh capability. That’s typical for the foldable telephones we have seen to date. The Flip is sufficiently small that the capability may final an entire day, however twin batteries are recognized for being much less environment friendly than a single cell.

I’m additionally curious how straightforward the fingerprint reader shall be to make use of. It’s built-in into the facility button on the Z Flip’s proper facet and has a flat floor, identical to on the Galaxy Fold. You double press it to launch the digicam, as you’d on different Android phones (the Z Flip makes use of Android 10). When it is closed, the fingerprint reader is on the highest of the display screen sandwich, with an entire different facet of the display screen slightly below it. It feels a bit of bizarre, and I ponder if it will get in the best way in any respect when utilizing the phone, or is that this is only one extra function to get used to.

Galaxy Z Flip specs

There’s much more of the Galaxy Z Flip to discover, particularly because it compares to the Motorola Razr foldable flip phone. CNET will evaluate the system as quickly as we are able to. 

Galaxy Z Flip versus Motorola Razr

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip Motorola Razr
Display dimension, decision Internal: 6.7-inch FHD+ Dynamic AMOLED; 2,636×1,080-pixels / External: 1.1-inch Super AMOLED; 300×112-pixels Internal: 6.2-inch, foldable pOLED; 2,142x876p pixels (21:9) / External: 2.7-inch glass OLED, 800×600-pixels (4:3)
Pixel density 425ppi (inside) / 303ppi (exterior) 373ppi (inside display screen)
Dimensions (Inches) Folded: 2.99 x 3.44 x 0.62 ~ 0.68 in / Unfolded: 2.99 x 6.59 x 0.27 ~0.28 in Unfolded: 6.eight x 2.eight x 0.28 in / Folded: 3.7 x 2.eight x 0.55 in
Dimensions (Millimeters) Folded: 73.6 x 87.Four x 15.4 ~17.Three mm / Unfolded: 73.6 x 167.Three x 6.9 ~ 7.2 mm Unfolded: 172 x 7 2 x 6.9mm / Folded: 94 x 72 x 14mm
Weight (Ounces, Grams) 6.46 oz; 183g 7.2 oz; 205g
Mobile software program Android 10 Android 9 Pie
Camera 12-megapixel (wide-angle), 12-megapixel (extremely wide-angle) 16-megapixel exterior (f/1.7, twin pixel AF), 5-megapixel inside
Front-facing digicam 10-megapixel Same as primary 16-megapixel exterior
Video seize 4K (HDR 10+) 4K
Processor 64-bit octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 710 (2.2GHz, octa-core)
Storage 256GB 128GB
Expandable storage TBD None
Battery 3,300mAh 2,510mAh
Fingerprint sensor Right facet Below display screen
Connector USB-C USB-C
Headphone jack None None
Special options Foldable show; wi-fi PowerShare; wi-fi charging; quick charging Foldable show, eSIM, Motorola gestures, splashproof
Price off-contract (USD) $1,380 $1,499
Price (GBP) £1,300 Converts to £1,167
Price (AUD) Converts to $AU 2,054 Converts to AU$2,183

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Tarun Banerjee

Professional Web Designer & Developer,Expert in SEO & Digital Market, Founder of Tech Hunt.

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