Samsung unveiled a plethora of devices at its Unpacked event last month, the most notable of which — other than the Note 20 Ultra — was the Galaxy Z Fold 2. Unfortunately, Samsung omitted two crucial details: the release date and price.
Now we know. At a smaller scale ‘Unpacked Part 2,’ the company revealed its latest and greatest folding phone will be available on September 18 for a cool $1,999.99.
That’s just 20 bucks more than the original Fold launched at, so it’s nice to see there isn’t too much of a price hike this time around — although one would hope so given the price eclipses some high-end laptops.
So what do you get for your extra $20 bucks? Mostly, the promise of a more durable phone, but also the usual spec bumps and some notable usability improvements.
Unsurprisingly, Samsung says this is its best attempt at a hinged phone yet, after having gone through a few iterations with the original Fold and Z Flip. The hinge has been reinforced to be more rigid and better reject debris. It can also now be used in a laptop-like semi-open mode — useful for, say, participating in a video call.
Spec-wise, it’s basically a 2020 flagship, albeit one that is a little less premium than the S20 and Note 20 in some regards. You get a Snapdragon 865 Plus, 12 GB of RAM, and 256 GB of storage, which is plenty. The phone also has 4,500 mAh battery, which is pretty good, if not totally remarkable given the plethora of display surface area.
But on the camera front, Samsung is opting for ‘just’ three 12-megapixel cameras on the rear, so the device likely won’t quite hit the same imaging heights as its flagship siblings. On the other hand, you’ll be able to take a lot better selfies. While the phone already has two selfie cameras (one on the inside of the phone and one on the front), you can also now unfold the device to take high-quality selfies using the primary camera (with the front display acting as a viewfinder). It’s probably a little awkward to hold the phone this way, but you’ve gotta do it for the ‘gram.
Speaking of the front display, one of the most practical differences between the Fold 2 and its predecessor is that this panel is now much larger. It’s been upped from a measly 4.6 inches to a much more modern 6.2-inches, meaning the Fold 2 is likely more pleasant to use without having to open up the device. The actual folding screen gets a smaller bump as well, now 7.6 inches rather than 7.3.
Many of the improvements also come on the software front. Samsung still allows you to run three separate app windows, and the company has smoothed the transition when going from the outer screen to the inner one. Samsung also now gives you more control over the DPI of these apps, and it’s collaborated with partners to make popular apps like the Office suite work better with the foldable form-factor.
By default, the phone will be available in either bronze or black colorways, although Samsung now lets you customize your hinge for a nice pop of color too. And though I’m normally not a fan of design partnerships with luxury brands, I quite dig the special-edition Thom Browne bundle, which also includes a Galaxy Watch 3 and the Galaxy Buds Live.
The Galaxy Z Fold 2 is now up for pre-order and ships September 18th. It will be available from the big three US carriers as well as unlocked from Samsung.com.
Published September 2, 2020 — 03:10 UTC