Foldable smartphones, led by the Samsung Galaxy Fold and Flip editions, offer a whole new convenience and multitasking experience that cannot be experienced without having used a foldable phone. There has been some competition, for example from the latest Huawei Mate X2, but the market remains in favor of the foldable Samsung.
As the second half of the year approaches, it’s time to see some new Korean foldable phones in the Fold and Flip series. There’s no definitive release date or anything official from Samsung just yet, but rumors already have a lot to reveal about the upcoming Galaxy Z Fold3 and Galaxy Z Flip3. Here in the article we will try to detail everything that is shared and makes these newbies interesting for consumers.
Samsung, in its report for the first quarter of 2021, noted that “the demand for foldable phones … is expected to continue to grow” in 2021 and that “the company will focus on meeting that demand.” This is in line with the assurance made by TM Roh, president and head of Samsung’s mobile communications business, at the end of 2020. He said that in 2021 Samsung will release more foldable phones.
Roh also informed that these phones will be more accessible than before. In the effort to stay ahead of the curve, Samsung is expected to introduce at least two new foldable smartphones in the coming months. Both will be the third editions of their respective series – Galaxy Z Fold and Galaxy Z Flip – and one of them could be more affordable, at least in the general flagship lineup.
The Galaxy Z Fold3 and Galaxy Z Flip3 are expected to be rolled out with major design and specification improvements over the previous generation of foldables. In addition to sealing the spaces better, strengthening the hinge mechanism to take more trouble and streamlining the camera matrices; both phones are even expected to get some sort of entry protection rating.
There isn’t a specific number as to what type of IP rating is, but it’s interesting because smartphone takers have a caveat on how a foldable phone will fare against accidental splashes or a dust attack. An IP rating for the first time could add more leverage to Samsung’s footing in the pinnacle of the foldable phone market.
The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 has been rumored since late 2020. Since then we’ve heard about the new book-shaped foldable that is expected to come in a thinner and lighter format. It is believed, and only solidified by various rumors to this end over time, that the Galaxy Z Fold3 will be the first Samsung smartphone – let alone a foldable one – to feature an integrated camera, although the placement of such an improvement optics is still questionable.
Another interesting speculation is the inclusion of S Pen. There have been repeated indications that Samsung may prefer to ditch the Galaxy Note series – which is built around the S Pen experience – in favor of foldable Galaxy phones. The Galaxy Z Fold3 or Galaxy Z Flip3, or maybe even both, are likely to get the S Pen Stylus. It’s still unclear whether the Stylus will come with the phone or whether it will just be compatible, like with the company’s flagship, the Galaxy S21 Ultra.
Heading towards the back, the phone will likely keep the triple camera setup in a vertical orientation with the LED floating just below. The camera island is supposed to be cut slightly, and the possibility of a third very thin LED display along the hinge – which would be further tweaked to minimize the gap between the folded halves – is expected. Since the Z Fold3 is likely to be thinner and lighter, there’s a chance the bezel is now almost insignificant.
It’s no surprise to assume that the Galaxy Z Fold3 will be powered by the Snapdragon 888 SoC paired with 16GB of RAM and 512GB of storage. The battery could be a compromise in the new model which will be presented with a 120Hz Dynamic AMOLED display. The Z Fold3 will likely offer a battery of around 4,275mAh, compared to 4,500mAh on the Galaxy Z Fold2. There is no specific timeframe for the launch of the new foldable phone, but an August date is very likely. According to the leaked renderings, the phone could be launched in the colors black, silver and green.
The other side of the coin
Samsung’s new foldable clamshell phone – the Galaxy Z Flip3 – is set to release this year. A natural successor to the Galaxy Z Flip is expected to be called the Z Flip2, but since Samsung rolled out a 5G variant of the Z Flip in the meantime, a Z Flip3 moniker makes perfect sense.
Again, there’s no official confirmation from Samsung, but it would likely be called the Galaxy Z Flip3 and launch anytime now. Before or after the Galaxy Z Fold3, nobody thinks so at this point, although some rumors suggest that the two new foldable smartphones could be launched at the same time – in August or maybe later.
While the Z Flip3 should be more or less aesthetic than its predecessor, it will have a vertical dual-camera setup this time around. This orientation of the camera module may be in keeping with another rumor that suggests the phone will have a larger, brighter exterior display – enough to show a full notification.
Based on what has floated in tech circles, the Galaxy Z Flip3 is likely to have a redesigned hinge mechanism and improved display material to set it apart from the predecessor. Samsung is paying more attention to the durability of its eye-candy device, which in addition to the IP rating will have Gorilla Glass Victus on all sides.
One pitfall for the Galaxy Z Flip3, if rumors are true, will be its 3,300mAh battery, which reportedly supports modest 15W wired charging. It’s unclear whether the Z Flip 3 will debut with support. Stylus or if it would be the business phone with the S Pen experience or if it would just launch without the accessory – even a possibility!
What’s safer is that the phone will be powered by Snapdragon 888 and launch in four color options with a trendy two-tone layout. As expected, the Galaxy Z Flip3 might be the most affordable foldable model; if that would happen, only time will tell.