The Galaxy Z Fold 2 is the second iteration of the Fold range and seeks to erase the mistakes of the first model. We had the chance to take it in hand for a long time and we can say it without batting an eyelid: the Z Fold 2 is the smartphone of the future. However, the future is paying off, this product is still reserved only for the wealthy with its price of 2020 euros.
Released in 2019, the Samsung Galaxy Fold marked a discreet revolution. For the first time, a builder dared to market a foldable screen smartphone. The terminal has been praised for its technology and its use, but has also been criticized for its fragility, its small screen and the lack of applications that fully use the new format.
Samsung heard the remarks and decided to erase them with this Galaxy Z Fold 2, that we were able to take in hand. If the smartphone is still in the ultra high-end segment with a price of 2020 euros, it changes the range so much that alongside it, the first model would almost pass for a rough-cut prototype.
The Galaxy Fold 2 is a smartphone that seeks to offer the best possible experience. Therefore, it is normal that Samsung endows it a technical sheet that makes you dream, including a Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 + processor, 12 GB of RAM, 256 GB of memory and a 4,500 mAh battery. On the display side, the manufacturer equips its smartphone with a large 7.6-inch AMOLED main screen in QHD (refresh rate of 120 Hz) and a secondary screen (also AMOLED) of 6.2 inches in FHD + ( refresh at 60 Hz). The latter brings a major improvement over the small 4.6-inch display of the first terminal.
|Galaxy z fold 2|
|Screen||Internal: 7.77 ”
AMOLED Infinity Flex
(2208 x 1768 pixels) 21: 9 ratio
|Chipset||Snapdragon 865+ (7nm)|
|BONE||Android 10 / One UI 2.5|
|Main sensor||Triple photo sensor
12 megapixels, 1.12 µm, f / 2.2 (Ultra Wide)
12 megapixels 1.8 µm f / 1.8 (wide angle)
12 megapixels 1.0 µm f / 2.4
|Selfie sensor||10 megapixels, 1.22 µm, f / 2.2|
25W fast charge
11W wireless charging
Reverse wireless charging
|Biometrics||Fingerprint reader on the edge|
|Audio||two AKG stereo speakers|
On the design side, Samsung has made great efforts to offer the smartphone as chic as possible. It is available in two finishes: black and “bronze gold” with an aluminum shell. We find the same features as on the Galaxy S20 and Note 20, with the large sensor at the top left and rounded shapes, which makes it very pleasant in the hand.
Folded, the smartphone is 16.8 mm thick (dimensions of 159.2 x 68 x 16.8 mm) against 15.5 mm for the first model. If it is slightly thicker, the product’s “yawn” when folded up has been reduced, becoming almost invisible. This makes it easier to put in a pocket and it is less bulky in use.
The outer screen, larger than on the Fold 1, is now more than a backup display for seeing its notifications. It can in fact be used like a “classic” smartphone. To reduce the size of this 6.2-inch screen, Samsung chose a very long and unusual 25: 9 ratio which is very appreciable because it can be used with one hand. The fingerprint sensor is always placed on the side so that it can be used with the smartphone unfolded or folded.
The main advantage of the Z Fold 2 is of course its large interior screen that opens like a book. Here, Samsung has also made some changes from the first terminal. We go from a 7.3-inch screen to a 7.6-inch screen, still in an aspect ratio close to 4: 3. The notch at the top right has disappeared in favor of an awl to save space.
Likewise, the hinge has been redesigned from scratch with a smoother and more resistant mechanism. The fold in the center of the screen is also more discreet, but is still visible and felt under the fingers. The technology still has some limitations, although they are acceptable. The protective film that had so much talked about when the Fold was released is back, but better integrated and impossible to remove.
More a PC than a smartphone
Using the smartphone takes on its full meaning once the large screen is unfolded. Whether it’s for watching a video, gaming or just browsing, it is as comfortable as a tablet. Comfort enhanced by the refresh rate (adaptive) of 120 Hz and AMOLED technology, always flattering for the retina. Some games, like Asphalt, are compatible with the particular Fold 2 format.
Unlike the first model, the Galaxy Z Fold 2 makes full use of its foldable screen technology. Indeed, the One UI 2 overlay brings the Flex Mode, introduced with the Z Flip, which allows the folded display to be used as two separate screens. To put it simply, the smartphone does what Microsoft’s Surface Duo promises to do when released. So when you write a message with the smartphone bent 90 degrees, the lower part of the screen can act as a keyboard, while the upper part displays the message.
Likewise for a video on Youtube, with player above and comments below. Many applications are compatible with this mode and almost transform the smartphone into a small laptop.
The terminal format makes it easy to put down if you are watching hgy- (a movie, both in “PC mode” and in “tent mode”. If you want to enlarge the display, just unfold the screen as far as possible and the screen expands automatically. Practical, intuitive, fluid.
Finally, multitasking allows you to use up to three applications at the same time as needed. It is for example possible to put the notepad in one corner, an internet browser in another and an additional video. Samsung also offers customizable launches, a button that allows you to launch three applications at the same time if you wish.
Five photo sensors in total
Regarding the photo, Samsung offers five sensors in total. On the back cover, only part without screen, sits a module with three 12-megapixel sensors, classic, zoom and wide angle. With these, Samsung promises a digital zoom x10. The two screens each have a 10-megapixel selfie sensor.
If the photos taken by the smartphone are clean, but not exceptional, it will be noted that the emphasis was on the software aspect as well as the flexibility of photo mode. For example, it is possible to take a selfie using the rear sensor and see the result on the small exterior screen. Likewise, the format of the device makes it easy to put it down and operate the self-timer. In these modes, both displays are used simultaneously.
When you take a photo with the outdoor sensor and the screen unfolded, the screen still split its display to show your photo, but also the menu of your photo application. Smart.
A smartphone that makes your mouth water, but that leaves some concerns
While the Fold 1 seemed to be the showcase of a technology that is still poorly understood, the Fold 2 makes full use of its format. After an hour of use, we finally see the value of a large screen that folds. The manufacturer has indeed taken care to think through each possible use, thereby erasing the gadget aspect of the product. It’s hard to go back to a classic smartphone after tasting it.
However, not everything is perfect when it comes to the Z Fold 2 yet. Autonomy, first of all, can be worrying. The smartphone has a 4,500 mAh battery. That might not seem like much for two screens, including one over 7 inches with a refresh rate of 120Hz. Hopefully the Fold 2 doesn’t fall flat after just a day of use. Fast charging at 25 Watts, present, could only save the furniture.
Then, the fragility of the product still raises questions. Can it be handled in the same way as a classic smartphone? Slip and be shaken in a pocket? A question to be answered in a test. The photo sensor which protrudes slightly from the cover and which hinders the use on a flat surface does not help on this point either.
Also read – Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra 5G review: quality at a high price
Finally, if this smartphone looks to be a foretaste of the future, you have to break the bank to take advantage of it. The terminal will be sold from September 18 at a price of 2020 euros. That’s expensive for a phone, especially since the technology moves so quickly and the Fold 3 could be out of date in just a year. It is already available for pre-order.
But in 2020, the Fold 2 represents the future. A future still reserved for the wealthy. If the format proves its worth, this format could however democratize in the years to come.