Samsung Galaxy Z Flip review: foldable without being bizarre [análise/vídeo]

THE Galaxy Z Flip was launched with an undeclared mission: to clean the image of the Samsung of the disastrous launch of the Galaxy Fold, the brand’s first foldable phone. At first glance, it succeeds: with a screen that folds horizontally and stout hardware (Snapdragon 855+ with 8 GB of RAM), the model conveys the feeling of a well-finished product, not of something taken out of the oven ahead of time.

But, hey, this is a phone with an official price of R $ 8,999! Therefore, a good initial impression is not enough. We need to know how the Galaxy Z Flip behaves on a daily basis. How long does the battery last, for example? Are the cameras good? And what is it like to use a folding screen?

I spent 15 days using the Samsung foldable as my primary cell phone. Below, I tell you all about this, which is one of the most peculiar smartphones that have ever been here. Tecnoblog.

Review of the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip on video

Screen and design

Let’s start by looking at the Galaxy Z Flip as it comes in the box: fully open. In this format, it displays a generous 6.7-inch Dynamic AMOLED screen with rounded corners, a stretched 21.9: 9 format and circular notch centered at the top of the screen (Infinity-O).

When you take the device out of the box, you are going to fold it right away and say something like “isn’t that the damn thing?” Then, you will leave it open again. Pay attention to this moment: this is when you will notice that the fold area has a crease, that is, it is slightly sunken.

The desire to release the meme of Pica-Pau on social media saying “I was tapped” will pass. It will pass because you will soon realize that this slight sinking does not hinder the experience of use. When you watch a video in full screen or scroll a web page, for example, you don’t even notice that detail.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip - open screen

In fact, the experience of using the screen is very positive. The resolution of 2636 × 1080 pixels (full HD +) guarantees an excellent level of detail, as it has to be, and the colors are vivid, including deep black.

I just got the impression that the maximum brightness is not as intense as on other Samsung AMOLED screens. Perhaps this is an effect of the film that covers the display. Anyway, if you want to use the device while synthesizing vitamin D, go for it: the brightness is strong enough to allow viewing the screen in sunlight.

The right side houses the volume controls and the on / off button integrated with the fingerprint reader

The right side houses the volume controls and the on / off button integrated with the fingerprint reader

Yes, the smartphone comes with a film placed at the factory and should not be removed (not least because it is not easy to do this). Interestingly, this component causes the impression that the display is plastic. But it is not: the Galaxy Z Flip has a glass screen. A glass thin enough to be folded.

This panel conveys some feeling of fragility, but only in the first contacts. They say, however, that it can be easily scratched. Incidentally, the rear covers also appear to be susceptible to risks as they are made of glass.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip - cases

The effect is beautiful, but, in the name of robustness, I think the rear should be metal, like the sides, which are aluminum. Fortunately, the phone comes with a kit of hard cases. Using them is mandatory.

How is it to use the folding screen?

That euphoria of the first contact with the smartphone was soon replaced by a moment of reflection: what am I doing with my life? I mean, what am I going to do with a folding screen?

Look, you can leave the Galaxy Z Flip “seated” to watch a video at the top of the screen. Or, leave the screen only partially folded to keep the phone resting on the table in a horizontal position while you watch a video in full screen (strange, but it breaks a branch every now and then).

Ah, the rumors are true: closed, the Z Flip fits very well in the pocket of your pants or blouse, for example.

On the left is the SIM card drawer (but the Z Flip also supports eSIM)

On the left is the SIM card drawer (but the Z Flip also supports eSIM)

But the trick is to leave your phone folded while you are not using it or when a task that does not require the screen is running – music playback, for example.

Here I noticed a certain “waste of potential”. At the rear, right next to the cameras, the Galaxy Z Flip sports a 1.1-inch Super AMOLED screen. It shows the time, notifications, the number of callers and audio controls, for example.

If you want to take a group selfie with the rear cameras, the small screen is even able to show if everyone was framed (it’s funny to see your face on such a tiny display).

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip - external screen

Here’s the “wasted potential”: if this screen were bigger – maybe occupying almost the entire top half – the Z Flip folding proposal would make more sense, because you would be able to do a lot of tasks with the smartphone closed using just one hand. Then, if you wanted to play or watch a video in full screen, just open the device.

Regarding the use of the cell phone with one hand, when you receive a call, you can answer it through the small screen, without opening the device. In that case, the Z Flip activates the speakerphone automatically. But this is one of the few exceptions. For most possible tasks, you will have to use the device with both hands, even to unfold it – to open the Z Flip with just one hand, just with a lot of training.

Software

The Galaxy Z Flip comes with Android 10 and the well-known One UI interface. As with other smartphones in the Galaxy family, it is accompanied by applications from Microsoft and Samsung itself: Bixby, Samsung Pay and Samsung Health, for example, are present.

The experience you find here does not differ much from that offered by other current Samsung devices. The differences are in the details. For example: remember when I said that you can use the Z Flip “seated”? If you do this with YouTube, the app will adjust to make the video occupy only the top of the screen.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip - camera app

If you switch from YouTube to the camera app, the top of the screen will show the frame while the bottom will give you access to the photo settings. Cool that Samsung worked on this detail.

It’s not new, but the discreet side handle that displays the latest open apps when dragged to the side is also cool. You can position it to the right or left of the screen, as well as choose the apps that appear there.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip - shortcut bar

Cameras

Different than it is, the Galaxy Z Flip screen steals the show all the time, but let’s not despise the model’s cameras: they don’t get to take the photos taken with the Galaxy S20 line, for example, but they do a very good job – na In fact, they are closer to the Galaxy S10 cameras.

The rear (or external) pair consists of two 12-megapixel sensors, the main with optical image stabilization and f / 1.8 aperture, the secondary with 123 degree wide-angle lens and f / 2.2 aperture.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip - cameras and external screen

Let’s start with the main one. Are the lighting conditions favorable? It will take photos with well-controlled noise levels and little loss of definition. At night too. With low light, you can notice a little more noise, but only paying close attention, the merit of well-balanced post-processing.

I am suspicious to talk about the wide angle. I’ve always liked this type of camera. What I found interesting about the Galaxy Z Flip is that, unlike many phones I’ve tested, the photos taken with it have levels of coloration, saturation and definition very similar to the main one.

The most notable thing about this camera is that it excels in distortion. This is great, for example, to make the indoor environment fully framed, but outside shots may require extra care with the angles to avoid bizarre distortions in the corners of the photo.

Photo registered with Samsung Galaxy Z Flip

Main

Photo registered with Samsung Galaxy Z Flip

Wide angle

Photo registered with Samsung Galaxy Z Flip

Main

Photo registered with Samsung Galaxy Z Flip

Wide angle

Photo registered with Samsung Galaxy Z Flip

Main

Photo registered with Samsung Galaxy Z Flip

Wide angle

Photo registered with Samsung Galaxy Z Flip

Main

Photo registered with Samsung Galaxy Z Flip

Wide angle

With 10 megapixels and f / 2.4 aperture, the front camera draws less attention, but it also does a good job. In general, the selfies registered with her have great definition and realistic coloring. It only takes a little attention with the background blur: made by software, it is not uncommon for this effect to blur what shouldn’t.

Selfie registered with Samsung Galaxy Z Flip

Selfie registered with Samsung Galaxy Z Flip

With blurred background

Performance, battery and sound

I have little to say about performance. Simply because everything works beautifully here. Pudera: The basic hardware of the Galaxy Z Flip consists of a Snapdragon 855+ chip, 8 GB of RAM and 256 GB of storage – there is no drawer for microSD, but this capacity pays off.

During the time that I used the device, all the tested applications opened quickly and worked without slowdowns, unexpected closings or any other type of problem. In addition, switching between open apps was almost instantaneous. In games, the Adreno 640 GPU ran titles like Breakneck and Asphalt 9: Legends with maximum graphics without blinking.

But do you know when you wonder when everything is going too well? I present to you the 3,300 mAh battery. Okay, it would be unfair to say that she is bad, but I expected more from her.

On the day of testing, I ran two hours of video via Netflix at full screen brightness, half an hour on YouTube, half an hour on Breakneck and Asphalt 9: Legends (added together), an hour and a half of social media and native browser, an hour of Spotify via speaker and I made a 10 minute call.

I started testing in the morning, at 100% load. At around 22:00, the battery was at 28%. This means that the device can be out of the socket for a whole day, but you may have to take the maximum “enjoy in moderation” seriously so the battery doesn’t let you down.

Ah, the recharge time from 20% to 100% was one and a half hours with the charger that came with the cell phone.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip

The speaker, located on the bottom of the Galaxy Z Flip, is also not impressive. The sound is clear, but distorted at maximum volume. As always, the experience is better with headphones. The device does not come with a 3.5 mm connection, but comes with AKG USB-C headphones.

Is the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip worth it?

Maybe it is because of some resistance to the new one, but I started testing the Galaxy Z Flip thinking that I would find no use for its foldable screen. But the truth is that you can easily incorporate the device into your daily life.

Suddenly I was listening to music with my cell phone closed, using only the small screen to advance the track. I also found myself leaving the device “seated” during a videoconference, as if it were a notebook. This position is also great for taking pictures of objects without having to resort to a tripod or some other type of support.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip - front camera

In addition, the Galaxy Z Flip has consistent performance, good cameras and a screen that, when fully open, is great for content consumption.

I just don’t say it’s perfect because the battery isn’t there and the speaker is just ok. In addition, the external screen is useful, but it would be much more if it were bigger – who knows in the next generation?

The problem of trying a technology that purports to be disruptive is left to your pocket: the official price of the Galaxy Z Flip in Brazil is R $ 8,999. You can find it with discounts above R $ 1,000 in retail, but it is still expensive.

Therefore, the Galaxy Z Flip appears as an option for those who have money in the box and is really open to experimenting with new concepts. If this is the case, it is only good not to create high expectations: the Samsung folding will deliver a different experience, but it is nothing that will revolutionize your routine.

That’s why I don’t venture to say that foldable cell phones will become commonplace in the near future. I think it is more likely that they will continue to emerge, but following the same path as tablets: becoming niche products.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip

Pros

  • Excellent performance
  • Cameras that do well
  • The screen has great image quality
  • Transporting it folded is very convenient

Cons

  • Expected more from the battery
  • The speaker is just ok
  • The external screen is cool, but it could be bigger

Technical specifications

  • Screens:
    • Internal: 6.7-inch Dynamic AMOLED, Full HD + (2636 × 1080 pixels), 425 ppi, 21.9: 9, notch Infinity-O
    • External: 1.1 inch (300 × 112 pixels) Super AMOLED, Gorilla Glass 6
  • Processor: octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 855+ with Adreno 640 GPU
  • RAM: 8 GB
  • Storage: 256 GB (UFS 3.0)
  • External cameras:
    • Main: 12 megapixel, aperture f / 1.8
    • Ultrawide: 12 megapixel, aperture f / 2.2
    • Add-ons: Flash, HDR10 +, 4K video at 60 fps, OIS (optical image stabilization)
  • Internal camera (front): 10 megapixel, f / 2.4 aperture, 80 ° angle, auto focus, HDR10 +, 4K video at 30 fps
  • Drums: 3,300 mAh, fast charging, Qi wireless charging, Wireless PowerShare
  • Operational system: Android 10 with Samsung One UI 2.0 (with upgrade to One UI 2.1)
  • Connectivity: USB-C, Bluetooth 5.0, WiFi 802.11ac, NFC, GPS, GLONASS, Beidou, Galileo, physical SIM card, eSIM
  • Sensors: fingerprint reader on the side, accelerometer, barometer, compass, brightness, proximity, gyroscope
  • Dimensions:
    • Closed: 87.4 x 73.6 x 15.4 mm (17.3 mm thick counting the protrusion of the camera)
    • Open: 167.3 x 73.6 x 6.9 mm (7.2 mm thick counting the protrusion of the camera)
    • Weight: 183 g
  • Colors: black, violet

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