Review of the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4

After a year, it’s safe to assume that Samsung doesn’t have the same upgrade scale up its sleeve as it did before. The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4 is more of a small update than a big change, which may be expected given how the Z Flip line has been going.

When Samsung came out with the Galaxy Z Flip 3, it was a big step forward for the company’s line of foldable phones. The small flip phone used to be a computer geek’s dream, but now it’s a popular choice thanks to changes in its shape, features, and price.

Review of the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4

Design and construction

  • Slightly slim design
  • Made it last longer
  • Still unknown is how long they will live.

Because Samsung stuck so closely to last year’s successful design, you will once again have a small phone that you can fold up into a square. Also, the outside will have a two-tone finish that will hide the cover screen to some extent. Exterior.

Quite a few changes have been made. The main part of the phone now has a matte finish instead of a glossy one, and its corners are gradually becoming more square. The back display hasn’t changed, but the camera lenses now stick out further from the device’s body.

Matte finishes are now available in four common colours: bora purple, blue, rose gold, and graphite. With Samsung’s “Bespoke Edition” tool, which is again only available through the company’s online store, you can make your own unique Flip. This tool gives you more options to choose from, such as a wider range of frame and body colours.

The hinge has undergone the most significant transformation. Because of this, the crease in the screen is now a bit less obvious, despite the fact that it is still difficult to ignore. This has resulted in the crease being narrower and more subtle. When closed, the Z Flip 4 still has a little gap, unlike its competitors such as the Huawei P50 Pocket, which can be folded completely flat. Samsung has not yet caught up to its competitors in this regard.

The Gorilla Glass Victus+ covering that is applied to the body seems to have contributed to a minor improvement in the device’s durability. The frame of the phone is made of a hardened material called “Armored Aluminum,” and the phone itself has another IPX8 rating, which protects it from water but not dust. For what it’s worth, I once dropped my Z Flip 3 right on the hinge from a height, and said aluminium was tough enough to protect it from damage.

Regarding the longevity of the hinge, I have no information to provide. Samsung claims that the hinge on the Z Flip 4 has been tested to resist more than 200,000 folds, which is sufficient that it will live for more than five years even if it undergoes 100 folds per day.

On the other hand, the business made the same claim the previous year, yet anecdotally I’ve heard of several incidents of Z Flip 3 phones getting fractures and rips in the screen along the hinge; in one case, the screen was completely ruined.

Has this problem been resolved yet? Can be. It would take too long for me to test it in a week on the phone, and if it’s any indication, a year on my Z Flip 3 is still working just great. Maybe this one is too.

However, regardless of the numbers that Samsung tosses out, it is important to keep in mind that if you purchase a folding phone, you are still taking a risk that the phone may break before its time has passed.

Screens and audio

  • 6.7-inch AMOLED main display with 120Hz
  • 1.9-inch screen for notifications and quick access to things
  • Decent stereo speakers

Aside from the modifications to the hinge that were stated earlier and a few new software tricks for the outer screen, Samsung has not made any changes to the two displays, which is one area in which the company has not altered anything.

The primary display is an AMOLED measuring 6.7 inches and operating at 120 Hz. Representatives from Samsung informed me that while it is technically a different panel from the one used the previous year, the primary improvements have to do with battery economy rather than display quality. screen.

Even though it has a screen that is 6.7 inches in size, the Z Flip 4 is still thinner and lighter than practically every other smartphone that has a screen of the same size. This is despite the fact that when folded, the Z Flip 4 is very small.

The screen is vivid and vivid colours are shown; nonetheless, I believe it is fair to claim that greater screen quality can be obtained on phones that cost around the same as this one. However, there isn’t much to it, and as long as you can accept the wrinkle, I can’t think that many people will find anything to be wanting here. There isn’t much to it, but there is a wrinkle.

The screen size of 1.9 inches raises a few extra questions. I really like this little screen that, when it’s not in use, tucks away into the design of the device, but it still provides just enough room for basic controls when it is.

You have the ability to monitor alerts (and even send some rudimentary message answers), control music playing, set timers, and more all from the small always-on display that you can configure to show the time and other information.

This year’s updates include the option to place personalised photos, gifs, and even videos on the screen; speed dial capabilities for up to three contacts; smart home controls provided by Samsung’s SmartThings system; and speed dial controls for up to three contacts.

It’s possible that some people may find this screen to be excessively cramped. It is smaller than the one that can be found on Motorola’s Razr 2022, but the screen on that phone seems to be an unattractive halfway house, as it about fills the phone but does not quite. Although Samsung’s version may be on the diminutive side, at least it was designed to be so, and its streamlined appearance complements that of the Z Flip 4.

The phone is equipped with a pair of stereo speakers; however, there is no headphone port on the device. The speakers are reliable, but they don’t stand out in any way; you may use them to listen to music or play games, but they won’t take the place of your Bluetooth speaker.

Specs and Features

  • Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 flagship chip
  • Only 8GB of RAM
  • Up to 512GB of storage

When compared to the performance of last year’s Flip 3, which used the Snapdragon 888, Samsung has fitted the Z Flip 4 with the most recent Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 processor, which is a year and a half’s worth of improvement.

One may argue that it is held down by the fact that it can only support up to 8 gigabytes of random access memory (RAM), and the form size also restricts the amount of cooling that can be crammed within.

This causes the phone to get somewhat warm while doing the most taxing activities, and its performance is a little bit slower than that of the speedier 8+ Gen 1 phones; nonetheless, this is not exactly a device that is intended for power users.

Only the most demanding gamers will be able to uncover performance issues with the Z Flip 4, since it is almost faultless for ordinary day-to-day usage.

The storage choices of 128 and 256 gigabytes are back, and a new level of 512 gigabytes has been added to the mix; given there is no option for extendable microSD card storage, you may want to think about going with one of the higher possibilities. You should also be aware that if you wish to utilise the Samsung Bespoke option to modify the layout, you won’t be able to do so with any model less than the 256GB capacity.

The connectivity as well as the other specs are satisfactory. In addition to NFC, Wi-Fi 6, and Bluetooth 5.2, it is compatible with 5G networks, including mmWave in the United States.

You have the option of using your face to unlock the device by using the single selfie camera, or you can use your fingerprint on the side-mounted fingerprint reader that is located on the power button. The fingerprint scanner is not embedded into the display itself.

Battery and charging

The Z Flip 3 from the previous year was not purchased mostly because to its poor battery life. The phone’s battery life was terrible, and I often worried about running out of juice before the end of the day.

This year, Samsung has made significant strides toward improving the situation, and despite the fact that the Z Flip 4 is not even close to being the best battery phone, thanks to the combination of a larger battery and a chip that is more efficient in its use of energy, it is now good enough that the battery should not deter anyone from purchasing the phone.

I’ve had the phone for over two weeks now, and on most nights when I go to bed, it has between 30 and 40 percent of a charge, which makes it quite a comfy mattress. I’ve only had issues with my phone once, and that was during a day trip to Kew Royal Botanic Gardens. Around 9 o’clock in the evening, the phone’s battery dropped to single digits, but that was only after several hours of taking photos, filming, and using social media—activities with which any phone would have issues.

Even while charging has been improved, it is still a little behind where it needs to be to compete in the market. The phone can now charge at up to 25W, which is an increase over the 15W it could charge at last year. However, it is important to note that Samsung does not provide a charger in the package with the phone. I tried charging the phone with two separate third-party chargers, and although one of them was able to restore 36% of the battery in half an hour, the other was able to restore 48% of the battery in the same amount of time.

That is sluggish in comparison to phones that can charge at lightning speeds, but it is really probably quick enough for the majority of people. Qi wireless charging is also an option; while it is even slower than wired charging, it offers a clear advantage in terms of convenience.

Camera and video

  • Large main camera
  • Ultra wide angle but no telephoto
  • Decent selfie camera – or use the main lens

If the battery was the Flip 3’s most significant shortcoming, the cameras come in a close second. The amount of work that Samsung has put into improving them has decreased, but the company has strengthened the area that was before the weakest and has unquestionably made this configuration more robust than it was before.

There are three cameras on this device: a pair of rear cameras with a resolution of 12 megapixels each (one primary and one ultrawide), and a front-facing camera with a resolution of 10 megapixels that is housed in a cutout in the inner screen. It does not have a telephoto mode at all, which may be its worst shortcoming; nevertheless, it would be irresponsible of me not to mention that neither the Pixel 6 nor the iPhone 13 have a telephoto lens either.

The single significant improvement over the Flip 3 may be seen in the primary camera, which now has a bigger image sensor that is capable of capturing more light. The outcome is significantly different despite the fact that the adjustment was rather little.

Much when the sun is shining brightly, this camera performs noticeably better than the one from the previous year. The improvement is even more evident when there is less light available, but there is still a discernible quality gap between the Flip 4 and the top picture phones.

The colour tone of Samsung’s devices is vivid and probably a little bit oversaturated, but the images are a wonderful joy since they are so full of life. The speed at which images are captured seems to have also been increased. Whereas the Z Flip 3 had trouble capturing images of youngsters or animals in motion on occasion, I took the Flip 4 to a cat cafĂ© for the day and never had any issues capturing moving subjects.

Even though there is no improvement to the technology, the Ultrapan manages to wow for the most part as well. There is a reduction in detail, and it is not going to be able to compete with the primary lens (or other competing phones) in conditions with the most challenging lighting, but for the most part, it does its job.

Even though the front-facing camera has a resolution of 10 megapixels, you may find it more convenient to utilise the rear cameras instead. When the phone is closed, the cover screen can be used as a preview screen for selfies or videos captured from either of the rear lenses, which were upgraded this year to add the option of portrait mode. Additionally, the cover screen can be used to see the image preview in the appropriate aspect ratio (albeit with severe letterboxing).

In spite of its relatively modest hardware, the Z Flip 4 offers a number of advantages when it comes to photography, and this is one of them. The second advantage is that since the screen is bendable, you can prop it up practically anywhere, making it an ideal device for filming high-definition video at 60 frames per second.

Although I think Samsung primarily designed this feature with the TikTok audience in mind, I find it quite useful for recording episodes when I’m doing out so I can see my progress.

Software and updates

  • It comes with Android 12
  • Four years of guaranteed operating system updates

Android 12 and Samsung’s One UI 4.1 are preinstalled on the Z Flip 4, which also comes with Android 12.

Although it’s not my personal favourite Android skin, One UI is definitely up there among the finest. You’ll have to put up with quite a few pre-installed applications (some of which are from Samsung, while others are from LinkedIn or Microsoft Teams), as well as a user interface that may be stiff and inflexible, but the positive is that it’s the thing that’s simplest to use on Android.

If you pair your phone with other Samsung devices, such as headphones, smartwatches, or smart home technology, you will be able to take advantage of additional software features and receive all of the benefits that Android 12 has to offer. These benefits include the ability to customise the user interface using Material You and comprehensive privacy settings.

In addition, there are software modifications available for the foldable. I have previously discussed several for the screen and camera, but another important feature is called Flex mode. This mode allows you to transfer the content of an app’s screen to one half of the screen when it is partly folded, and it places extra controls on the other half of the screen.

An optional experimental setting allows you to turn this on for any app, giving you options such as screenshot, brightness, and volume controls, and even turning the bottom half of the screen into an old-fashioned trackpad for the app that you are using. Some apps, like the camera, already have their own custom controls. However, this setting is optional and can be turned on for any app.

When it comes to software upgrades, Samsung is also the market leader in the Android space. It has been promised that flagships like as the Z Flip 4 would get four Android version upgrades beginning with version 13 this year, as well as five years’ worth of security fixes.

To put it plainly, this indicates that I have a strong suspicion that the software on this phone will continue to get upgrades for a very long time after the hinge or the screen has stopped functioning properly.

Price and availability

Pre-orders for the Z Flip 4 may be placed right now, and the device will officially go on sale this coming Friday, August 26.

You can make a reservation for it right now on the official Samsung website, where the pricing starts at 1,099 euros, or if you want, you can also do it on Amazon Spain.

You can get other products with comparable specifications for several hundred dollars less, or considerably more powerful cameras and hardware for the same price as the Z Flip 4. The Z Flip 4 is not a particularly good bargain when considering both its price and its specifications.

However, the comparison is made to phones that do not fold in any way. For a foldable device, the price is still reasonable; but, buyers will need to be willing to spend a little bit more for the form factor. The cost is reasonable, but you should make sure that you are happy with the additional risk of incurring additional fees for repair or replacement in the event that there are issues with the hinge.

Check out our rankings of the best phones and top Android phones to see what else is available on the market. If you’re looking for additional choices from Samsung, have a look at our rating of the best Samsung Galaxy phones to see what else the South Korean firm has to offer.

Verdict

The Z Flip 4 is not an ideal smartphone, and it is quite doubtful that it will convince its detractors to change their minds. However, it is without a doubt the greatest foldable device now available on the global market (although this may not be saying much), and it ought to persuade anybody who was on the fence about the model from the previous year.

The phone’s strengths are enough to make it a legitimate competitor to any other flagship device now available on the market. These strengths include impressive raw specifications, a stylish foldable design, and innovative software that makes the most of the hardware.

The two major drawbacks of the previous phone, namely its short battery life and its lacklustre camera, have been addressed to some degree but not entirely in this model’s redesign. Both are now satisfactory in areas where they were previously inadequate, doing away with the primary reservations that consumers had about purchasing a Flip.

My one and only genuine worry is still about the product’s durability, mostly since this is the one aspect that I am unable to examine on my own. I can’t promise that the Z Flip 4 will be as durable as other gadgets or that it won’t stop working before you are ready to upgrade. However, if you are prepared to place a wager on it, this is a phone that is worth placing a wager on.

specs

  • One-UI Android 12
  • 6.7-inch HD+ (2640×1080) foldable AMOLED 120Hz 2x HDR10-capable monitor
  • 1.9-inch Super AMOLED (260512)
  • 8GB RAM 128/256/512 GB internal storage Qualcomm Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 octa-core
  • 12MP, f/1.8, OIS + 12MP ultra wide, f/2.2
  • 10MP front camera, f/2.4
  • 2D face scan
  • Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.2, GPS, 4G-LTE
  • Non-removable IPX8 USB-C 3700mAh battery
  • Wireless 25W charging
  • 165.2x 71.9×6.9mm unfolded
  • 84.9 x 71.9 x 17.1-15.9mm, 187g

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