Since 2020, SAMSUNG has been trying to rejuvenate the smartphone with the Z Flip – and this year the company may have hit the bullseye.
The Galaxy Z Flip 5 doesn’t look all that different from its predecessors, but don’t be fooled.
It’s the finer details that make the Flip 5 the best clamshell phone out there.
But is it enough to convince iPhone owners? Read on for our full review.
look and feel
The first thing that catches our eye is the crease itself – the gap is gone, gone, gone.
Now it folds perfectly and looks much neater.
When you open the phone, the hinges feel pretty strong and sturdy – so much so that using it with one hand is a bit of a challenge.
The colors available this year are pretty awesome too, the color I’m testing is elegant mint.
When the device is folded, you’ll notice that the screen on the outside (known as the cover screen) now takes up all the space – more on that later.
The other tweak is that the camera lenses have been placed side by side rather than one below the other, which is obviously to make room for the gorgeous front page.
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There are two displays to talk about – the main screen when the Flip 5 is unfolded and the external cover display.
First off, the main screen that opens up hasn’t changed much, with a glossy 6.7-inch screen.
But it looks a bit different on the cover when the Flip 5 is closed.
Samsung has opted for a full-screen experience with a larger 3.4-inch display (last year’s Flip 4 was just 1.9-inch).
And the Flip 5 is way better for that.
The tech company has expanded what you can put on it — and how you put it there — with far greater customization options.
This allows me to choose a background image and the shortcuts to display alongside many useful widgets.
Of course, another big benefit is that you can take perfect selfies with it – something an iPhone can’t do – as you can see yourself clearly on the cover display and even use the arch to sit it down somewhere without yourself having to stretch an arm out at all.
The cameras are also largely unchanged, with a dual 12-megapixel setup.
For those who dare, there are plenty of options to try, including a “Pro” mode with everything from focus to ISO.
Trying Standard mode on a house cat who wouldn’t sit still produced mixed results, but mostly good shots given the low light conditions.
The other big upgrade is under the surface in the form of a new Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chip alongside 8GB of RAM.
As a result, the device runs smoothly and quickly.
Apps are super responsive, even when several are open at the same time.
And with up to 512GB of storage, there’s sure to be plenty of local storage to play with.
The battery is also the same as the Flip 4 on paper at 3700mAh, but the upgraded chipset means you can get more miles out of the device.
That’s pretty impressive too, considering Samsung made the phone 2mm thinner even when closed.
Samsung’s persistence has paid off and the Flip has evolved into a highly desirable smartphone that actually stands out from the crowd.
There are now other folding phones out there like the Flip Around, but none look as premium as this one.
Someone recently told me that after seeing the Flip 5 they had never been so tempted to throw away their iPhone because it felt so Y2K.
Perhaps the smartphone industry really needs something old and new to bring some much-needed excitement back.
But at £1,049 for the 256GB version and 512GB for the £1,149 version, they’re not exactly cheap.
However, they are actually slightly cheaper than the Flip 4 for the same storage size at launch.
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