So at this point I've been using the Samsung Galaxy z flip here for about a week and I've got to say I actually kind of love it.
For the first time in foldable phones, I can actually say that I think Samsung got it mostly right up until this point.
They've been experiments and proofs of concept and the Galaxy Z flip still is, but it's one that makes me see how foldable phones could actually work and could almost even be practical for day to day use.
So the number one thing I love is that when you fold it, the phone can actually stand on its own and Adam variety of angles, not just one.
It's quite a technological feat that Samsung makes the hinge stiff enough and what it's calling.
In Flex mode to go back really far without it snapping open, and to come really close to closing it before those magnets on the corners engage and snap it shut.
So I've used this in real life naturally in a lot of different ways, taking a selfie.
If I wanna set it down because I'm eating soup for lunch, and I want to read an article or watch a video sometimes just because I don't wanna close it fully, so I might turn it on its side and prop it up.
I don't even mind watching video that way if it's more convenient for me yeah, the image has a little bit of a bend in it, but Sometimes I don't care.
Of course the stiffness of the hinge means that also takes a little bit more effort if you want to snap the phone open, but I figured out a way to do it.
Honestly, I just usually use both hands.
I also like how portable this devices the Motorola razor is really portable too.
They're about the same size.
I found it really easy to fit into any pocket.
I could zip it up into my jacket pocket, put it in my front jeans, pocket, rear jeans, pocket.
And it wouldn't get lost.
But, more than that, I also felt the security of having it in there because it folds up.
I also feel like the delicate screen on the inside is much more protected.
You've got glass on the outside here, and if the phone drops, yeah, that breaks.
But, it also comes with a free case in the box.
It's a little flimsy.
I feel like it can pop off pretty easily, but it gives me that extra level of peace of mind.
I don't really mind the way that it works.
Another surprising thing I like about z flip is the way that it makes me more intentional about when I want to use my phone.
So I can't access it as easily as I would like any other device pretty much that's just a screen you pick it up.
It's there, you immediately start born scrolling through your social media networks or something like that.
But with this phone, I get the sense of finality when I'm done using it when I don't want to interact with it.
I just simply close it and when I do want to use it, I open it.
And that just makes me feel like I'm much more engaged with the device in a really weird way.
On the flip side what's not so great about it is 1.1 inch outer screen, it is simply too small I'll dive into that later too.
At $1,380 it's ridiculous expensive for the specs, it's still fragile and battery life is only [INAUDIBLE] The phone is also incredibly smudgy on the outside and the inside and that makes me wonder if cleaning it is going to damage the screen if I press too hard that's part of Samsung's care warning for it.
Finally I don't like the location of the fingerprint reader I think that it inhibits one handed use at least for me because I'm mostly using the phone one handed down here at the bottom and I have to kind of lunge my thumb up if I want to unlock it.
Launch the camera this way if you've got bigger hands than me that might not be a problem for you.
Okay, let's talk about the glass screen and the build because foldable phones are all about this screen.
This one is 6.7 inches on the inside Samsung said that it's made from ultra thin glass.
And it feels pretty good, it feels smooth, it feels a lot less bumpy and the crease seems a lot less noticeable than on the Motorola razor for example, and also on the Galaxy fold part of that's because the phone is narrow so you're really only feeling this much crease instead of this much crease.
Now of course with the foldable phone you spend a lot of time doing this bending it and that's going to cause wear and tear.
Samsung says that the photo will withstand 200,000 bends over the course of a lifetime, which is equivalent to about five years and estimates.
I've only had this phone for about a week so I don't see any damage so far which is great.
That said you can damage it if you were to drop it on his face on a rock.
Or take something to it like a chisel or a pic, then you could intentionally damage your display.
There is a warranty and there is 24, 7 concierge service with this device.
So you, You do have some protection if you get it and it happens to you.
Now we all know what happened with the galaxy fold and how early review units were getting damaged so Samsung had to redesign that device.
Well those design changes from the fold.
Also carried over into the Galaxy Z flip, which is good.
For example, I don't feel any of the protective coating in the corners, so I'm not going to be tempted to peel something off that I shouldn't be peeling off.
There are also these little things on the side that I keep calling t caps.
They're basically plastic and they're there to reinforce the hinge and also to make sure that nothing is gonna work its way underneath that hinge.
And then damage the phone from the inside.
When I bend the phone, I don't see any gaps in the screen anywhere where I could put my fingernail or anywhere something could get through and that's really good.
Did you see a little bit of an air gap?
At the end the design if I hold it up to the light I can see through that and the Motorola razor lies a little bit flatter, which I think is aesthetically a little bit nicer, but this design is still much improved.
I just want to call it this bezel real quick, it's a little bit thick, it feels like it's plastic.
It just doesn't seem very luxurious for a phone of this price.
But the one thing that it does do is it creates a little bit of a rise between the screen and the rest of the world.
So if you were to drop the phone on its face, you got a little bit of a gap for protection.
When the phone's closed, it feels really compact and sturdy, and I like that.
I've learned that when I'm exercising, hiking, or jogging, or just walking around if I grip the phone in my palm By this hinge end.
Feels really comfortable and I don't feel like I'm gonna drop it.
So it feels secure.
I like that.
When it's open it also feels pretty good and sturdy in my hand.
The dimensions of this phone are very tall and narrow.
I found that typing wasn't a problem at all.
Using it one handed while on a bus was totally fine or when I was doing something with my other hand.
There's this kind of multi app bar on the side that Samsung expects for you to use for multitasking.
So opening an app on the top half of the screen and another one on the bottom, and that did come in handy naturally, but I also just liked using this on the side and adding in my favorite apps.
And, using that as a shortcut to open those apps.
The only downside to having a screen with these tall narrow dimensions comes with maybe watching videos.
So when I watched YouTube, Netflix for example, you do get those thick black bars on either side.
You can zoom into enlarge the picture and fill the entire screen, but you're going to be cutting off The top and the bottom.
Let's talk about cameras.
There are two main cameras on the Galaxy Z Flip.
We've got a twelve megapixel wide angle and a twelve megapixel ultra wide angle lens.
These are essentially the same quality as the Galaxy S10.
So it's not the new 12 megapixel cameras that you're gonna see in the Galaxy S20 phones.
On the inside you have a 10 megapixel camera as well for selfies or for video chatting.
Image quality, predictably good.
I was able to take a lot of shots outdoors, indoors, in low light, And it's pretty much what I expect from a phone like the Galaxy S10.
When there's abunded lighting, you're gonna get really crisp, clear, beautifully saturated images.
A little light to be honest in some scenes, it was a little bit of a struggle.
Samsung's night mode kicked in in some circumstances.
And it's still pretty good.
You're gonna get shots that you can use, you might just not get every shot that you love.
Overall I was really satisfied with the pictures that I got on the Z Flip especially when you compare it to the Motorola Razr.
Anytime I want to take a photo when the phone is open I just double click on this power button slash fingerprint reader.
When the phone's closed it's a little bit more complicated and this is one thing that I don't like.
If you press that button which is the only way to engage taking a photo It automatically turns the phone into selfie mode, which is good.
But then you have this tiny 1.1 inch screen on the outside that I mentioned.
And that's your only viewfinder.
This is problematic because you can't contextualize yourself within the shot.
It's very short and it's very wide.
It's pill shaped.
So you don't know where you are what anything looks like really, you can use the ultra wide angle lens by tapping on the screen and sliding your finger over.
So that's good if you want to get two people in the shot, but you still don't know where that other person is in the picture.
So it's kind of a complete surprise when you open it up.
There's one camera mode that I want to call out specifically, and that single take.
This is one that Samsung was hyping for the Galaxy S20 range of phones, but it's also in the galaxy z flip.
So what you do is you engage that mode, press and hold the button and it takes up to 10 shots in four videos.
I tried this.
And I realized that I spent a lot of time deleting these photos that I didn't want and it didn't really compose the shot the way that I wanted it.
So for me being admittedly a bit of a type A personality, I think that I would probably just rather pose the photo or the video myself to make sure that I've got what I really want to use.
And then if I deleted I'm only deleting when I took and not what this camera AI system decided that I wanted.
And speaking of this outer screen, which I may have mentioned is very, very small.
There's honestly not that much that you can do with that.
I just wanna do more.
I can double tap it to see the time, the date and my battery percentage.
It is touch sensitive.
So if you swipe on it, you can see the number of messages that you have, any missed phone calls and alarm, the date.
You can even tap into some of those messages.
It might say open phone for details.
So the new how to open your phone and unlock it and it will hopefully open up that app.
Sometimes it does not open up the pertinent app, sometimes you just get the homescreen and then you have to find that app again.
Other times you can tap on a message and actually see the content of that message float by you in ticker style.
I do like that, but I think that Samsung could have done a lot of, More there's all of this space here.
But when I look at the other foldable phones like the Motorola razor, I thought that 2.7 inch screen on the outside was miniscule, but you can do a lot more with it.
You can send cams messages, you can use voice Input to reply to her response.
So you're at least engaging with it.
Of course the galaxy fold.
You've got a 4.6 inch screen on the outside, it's tall, it's narrow, it's annoying to type on, but you can at least open up an app on the outside and use it to sort of quickly respond to something or to do something and then open up the phone and have the rest of that so I think Samsung still needs to work on this.
For me this auto screen is really the phone weakest link.
The galaxy flip android 10 as you would expect and it's using Samsung new UI2.
Performance is pretty good.
It's got Qualcomm snapdragon 855+ processor, so it's actually pretty great, very speedy, no lagging, in my experience with it at all.
256 gigabytes of on board storage with no expandable memory, that's still plenty generous for you to be able to store a lot of photos, apps And videos, and eight gigabytes of RAM.
So that's part of why it snappy.
The battery story is a little bit more complicated.
It's got a dual battery that means that there are actually two battery cells, one on the top one on the bottom, that makes it nice and even,and together they combine to create a capacity of 3300 milliamperes The battery capacity doesn't necessary translate directly to real world use and there is the extra complication that duo batteries are known to be less efficient than one large single battery cell.
The bottom line is that I could still mostly get through a day on a single charge, but I don't necessarily have the confidence that I'd be able to start in the morning at 6am when I wake up and then go till the wee hours I would definitely want to charge it if I were going to go out at night just to give myself some peace of mind.
So one day I used to pretty hard.
Spotted, I use navigation.
I was streaming Netflix and just using the phone as I normally would, and I got about 13 hours of use out of it.
This phone, not a battery beast, but it'll do it you need.
We've talked about what's good, what's bad.
Does it even make sense to spend $1400 on a foldable phone?
Well it depends on who you are.
If you're the kind of person who's gonna get a foldable phone, then you're an early adopter, then I would say this is the one to get.
That's going to be the most practical and give you the best experience.
Yes over the fold, and definitely over the Motorola Razor.
It's ultra portable.
The specs are pretty advanced and I absolutely love this flex mode, it stands up on its own, what other phone can say that?
Samsung has made this good enough to justify the next generation of phones and that's pretty amazing considering that the Galaxy Fold got off to a really rough start.
So should you go out and buy a galaxy z flip?
No, probably not.
But you should go get your hands on one in a store and try it out.
You should definitely pay attention to this design, because Samsung has made a very clear case that you might be using one of these phones in the future.
Thanks for watching.
Be sure to subscribe and check out my final review on cnet.com.
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