Samsung just unveiled the Galaxy Z Flip, its second folding phone. This phone’s big improvement over foldables to date is the use of a glass screen, and it definitely looks a whole lot nicer. From first impressions, it looks like glass, and it can’t be easily marked up by a fingernail like the plastic screens used to date.
The phone has a strong hinge, and that comes with some ups and downs. On the upside, it can hold itself open in any position. It opens smoothly, doesn’t creak and feels pretty good overall. On the downside, the phone is harder to open. It doesn’t flip open like a classic clamshell phone. Opening it with a single hand takes a lot of work, so you’ll probably be using two most of the time.
A lot of other drawbacks to early foldables have been improved here. The gap around the hinge is still there, but smaller. The inside bezels look smaller, too. And the crease where the screen folds is barely visible, though you can still feel it. It’s way better than what you’ll find on Motorola’s Razr, which has a plastic screen.
The Z Flip is Samsung’s first shot at getting a foldable right after the messy launch of last year’s Galaxy Fold. The Z Flip has a few key differences: it folds open and closed like a classic clamshell phone, rather than like a book; it uses a bendable “Ultra Thin Glass” display, instead of the weak plastic on the Fold; and it has fibers built into the hinge to prevent dust from getting in and damaging the display, which is what broke early units of the Fold. Samsung says the new glass will last for 200,000 folds.
The Z Flip has a 6.7-inch OLED display with a tall 21.9:9 aspect ratio, as well as a tiny 1.1-inch OLED cover display to see notifications when the phone is closed. Inside is a Snapdragon 855 Plus, 8GB of RAM, 256GB of storage, and a 3,300mAh “dual” battery. There are two 12 megapixel cameras on the back, a regular wide angle and an ultra-wide angle, and on the inside is a 10 megapixel selfie camera that’s cut out in the top of the display. The Z Flip supports wireless charging and runs a customized version of Android 10. Notably, the phone does not support 5G, unlike the new Galaxy S20 series of phones.
The phone will be available in the US and Korea starting February 14th and later in the UK priced at a cool £1,300.