We find that the GalaxyZ Fold 4, the latest from the Samsung stable, makes the strongest case for a foldable smartphone for today’s tech-savvy traveller.
Don’t box the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 with conventional smartphones. This is a peek into the future, a device with a premium price tag that opens up a whole new set of interactions with your smartphone. This isn’t just a foldable smartphone but a tab and smartphone rolled into one. The Z Fold 4 demonstrates that foldables have made the transition from concept devices to versatile gadgets that are ready to take on the real world.
The first generation of foldable devices including the Z Fold (that debuted in 2019) had their share of durability issues. Samsung has quickly put the wear and tear issues of the first-gen behind. The Z Fold 4 doesn’t just feel good in your hand, it’s also designed to be more durable and this includes the display and the hinge. The device is IPX8 certified for water resistance.
Samsung opts for a more flat-edge design. It’s in line with what we’ve seen with smartphones like the Samsung Galaxy S22+ and it adds to the design appeal. The 6.2-inch cover or external display is easier to use for quick tasks like calls or texts or short emails. Samsung has also managed to reduce the heft of this year’s Fold. At 263 gm, it’s only 10 per cent heavier than flagship devices like the S22 Ultra or the iPhone 14 Pro Max.
You’re likely to gravitate towards the primary 7.6-inch display that is the Z Fold 4’s headline feature. Think of it as a mini tab display. A display that creates a completely different set of use case scenarios for a book-type foldable vis-à-vis a conventional smartphone. Whether you’re flipping through eBooks on the Kindle App or gaming or working on a Word document, the large 7.6-inch (1812 x 2176 pixels / 373 PPI) display shines. Samsung has enhanced its UI to improve the multi-tasking experience. It’s also one of the first devices to ship with Google’s Android 12L specifically designed for larger screens.
Samsung has stretched the screen to body ratio of the primary display beyond 90 per cent. Colours are gorgeous and the 120Hz refresh rate adds to its binge watch creds. But it’s tough to ignore the black bands caused by the screen size. You do have the option of ‘zoom to fill’.
While it’s easy to watch videos when you’re chilling on your couch with the Fold in your hand, it’s tough to prop it up on full-screen mode. We’d recommend a case with a kickstand if you’re likely to be catching up on a lot of videos. You can switch to partially folded mode but different platforms play out differently on the screen when it’s partially folded.
This is Samsung’s premier flagship device, so cutting edge hardware is a given. The Z Fold 4 is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 processor. You get multiple storage versions that go all the way to 1TB; all versions come with 12GB of RAM. While the S22 Ultra remains Samsung’s most formidable mobile shooter, the Z Fold 4 is no slouch.
Samsung has improved the rear camera over last year’s Z Fold 3. The primary lens is now 50MP while the new 10MP telephoto lens now offers 3X zoom. We saw a visible improvement in low-light performance. It all comes together. The Z Fold 4 offers a unique user experience and a peek into the not so distant future where foldable smartphones could gain even wider consumer patronage.
Price: The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 starts at Rs 1,54,999 and is available in Graygreen, Phantom Black and Beige.
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