REVIEW: Retro Hit, Results In Samsung Galaxy Z Flip Packed With 2020 Technology
When dinosaur phones roamed this world back in 2004, a new innovation appeared on the radar and within weeks it became a smash hit.
The Motorola Razr a US mobile that flipped open to reveal the screen, was seen as one of the first really cool smartphones, it was an I must have device that was around way before the iPhone was even invented, Sony dominated the TV market along with a few European brands and Samsung had little if any presence in the smartphone market.
Roll on 16 years and the Motorola Razr is back, Samsung dominates the TV market and both Apple and Samsung are fighting it out in the luxury smartphone market.
Today when it comes to the recently reinvented Flip phone the battle is between the recently launched Motorola Razr and the all new Samsung Z Flip a slick looking device that is a vast improvement on last years, odd fellow device the Samsung Fold.
The Samsung Galaxy Fold opened horizontally and was clumsy the Galaxy Z Flip fold open vertically is very smooth though you do still need two hands to open it defying the concept of a one-handed flip.
Maybe the next version needs a button that flips the lid open.
The big question is whose life is this device going to fit into, male, female, the poser or the discrete individual who will simply slide this device out, pop the lid and let others take a sneak peek at an old retro concept reengineered for todays’ world?
For a unique device, this smartphone is expensive at $2,199.
It is a classic folding phone that looks sophisticated with all the performance of a top end Samsung device.
What’s on the outside is slick and smart, the design is excellent and befitting a premium device, it’s heavy in the hand but the square shape device with its own tiny screen on the cover is a real talking point when pulled out of a pocket or bag.
As for the actual display screen it is sharp and clear because it uses an Infinity Flex Display with Samsung’s Ultra-Thin Glass (UTG) overlay.
The FHD+ dynamic AMOLED display has a resolution of 2636×1080 (425 PPI), which is a slightly less pixel density than the Galaxy S10e.
Samsung’s first-of-its-kind UTG technology is also different from other Galaxy flagship devices. While the display does bend, it should be handled with care the instructions claim.
When it’s opened this device has a vertically long display that measures 6.7 inches on the diagonal and a 21.9 by 9 aspect ratio.
The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip’s 6.7-inch screen unfolds to be bigger than the Galaxy S10’s 6.1-inch display.
The display itself bends and creases, so that the device can morph into something smaller. But when it’s open, it’s one long display.
On the front glass is an information display and when combining this device with the stunning Samsung Buds + it allows you to quickly see information on the outside and then make a call with the device put away in a pocket.
As one hibernation escaping runner said, “It’s the perfect fit, all I need now is a pocket on my tights to fit it in”.
“small music and my health apps all in one device”.
Samsung are better known for large display screens that have gotten remarkably huge lately with a lot of very clever gear packed under the screen.
The big difference with the Flip is that the device is remarkably small in the hand until you open it and what you will find inside is all the top end features we have become accustomed to with a Samsun UI and all of the software found on a premium device.
One feature I do like is Duo, this feature is because Samsung has worked with Google to improve video which in the era of COVID-19 is a big benefit. I was able to open Duo write text messages, get contacts, and calls.
Google Duo displays the other caller on the top half of the screen in Flex mode with controls at the bottom, similar to a laptop. Google Duo does video calls on the Z Flip in wide-angle FHD (1080p), as opposed to previously in HD (720p).
The Galaxy Z Flip’s software is on One UI 2.1 and Android 10 compared to Motorola’s Razr that is on Android 8.1.
What you will also discover is that the specs are almost the same as the Galaxy S10 from last year.
The processor is a Snapdragon 855 with 8 GB of memory, and 256 GB of storage for the base model.
The battery is slightly smaller than the Galaxy S10 (3,400 mAh) at 3,300 mAh.
It comes with Bluetooth 5.0, Wi-Fi 6, and LTE CAT 16.
Compared to the Galaxy S20 series, which came out at the same time, they have a Snapdragon 865, up to 16 GB of memory and 512 GB of storage.
I would have liked to see this device as a 5G device especially for the price.
While a lot of the new big end of town smartphones have 68 and 108MP cameras the Flip cameras have smaller sensors that don’t compromise when it comes to shooting images or video.
The Galaxy Z Flip has three cameras, on the front and two on the back. It has a 10MP selfie camera that is easy to use in hands-free mode.
A lip separates the camera portion from the screen in the top-right corner.
The front camera on the Flip is flush with the display and in the centre. The back two cameras are 12MP wide and ultra-wide cameras. Even though the display is not an HDR10+ display, the wide-angle camera can film in HDR10+. It also has 8x digital zoom and optical image stabilization.
Some of the new features of the camera app were Take Selfie and Night/ Night Hyper lapse mode.
Take Selfie lets you place the phone down in Flex mode and take a collage of photos and videos.
Currently, there is not a device on the market like Samsung’s Galaxy Z Flip other than the Motorola Razr which does not have the same specs as the cheaper Samsung Z Flip.
The big question is do you use this device as your main phone or is it a special occasion device.
I believe there are two group who will love this device, those who fell in love with using the old Motorola Razr, they don’t want bells and whistles despite the Flip having some great technology packed in.
This market likes convenience and this device delivers functionality and convenience in spades.
Then there is the look at me market.
The Flip is a real hero in this space. It looks the part all class and functionality and makes you a “i Don’t follow the pack I am unique” type of person.
I do believe the Flip is good enough to be a daily device as Samsung didn’t skimp out on the specs and overall made an impressive first-generation clamshell-style smartphone.