Foldable smartphones are gaining popularity among consumers, driving brands to intensify their efforts in producing intricate devices. A recent development in this space involved Motorola integrating a sizeable edge-to-edge cover display into their flip phone. Following suit, Samsung has adopted a similar approach in their latest innovation. The Galaxy Z Flip series by Samsung has consistently impressed, with the Flip 4 (Review) model garnering positive feedback. While the phone received acclaim, one prevalent concern was the compact nature of its cover display.
Enter the Galaxy Z Flip5, a model that effectively addresses this limitation. Samsung has made significant improvements by introducing a spacious 3.4-inch cover display, capable of seamlessly handling routine tasks. This enhancement is accompanied by another notable upgrade: Samsung has incorporated their latest hinge technology, eliminating the unsightly gap when the device is folded. These dual enhancements propel the Z Flip5 into an appealing proposition for consumers. We have been using the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip5 for a little over 10 days now. So should you pick the Z Flip5 as your next go-to flip phone? Let’s find out in our full review.
Samsung Galaxy Z Flip5 Specifications
Before starting with the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip5 review, let’s glance at the phone’s specifications, pricing, and things we get with the device.
- Display: 6.7-inch FHD+ Dynamic AMOLED, 120Hz refresh rate
- CPU: Octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor
- RAM: 8/12GB
- Storage: 128/256GB
- Software: Android 13, One UI 5.1
- Main Camera: 12MP primary sensor + 12MP ultra-wide
- Selfie Camera: 10MP
- Connectivity: USB Type-C, Wi-Fi 802.11ac, Bluetooth v5.3, GPS/ A-GPS, FM Radio
- Cellular: Dual SIM
- Fingerprint Scanner: Yes, side-mounted
- Battery: 3,700 mAh, non-removable
- Charging: 25W fast charging
Design & Display
The Galaxy Z Flip5 maintains the sleek design of its forerunner while introducing subtle enhancements, including a flatter frame, matte glass, and rounded corners. These refinements collectively contribute to an enhanced user experience. Notably, the phone showcases an upgraded hinge that offers a remarkably smoother operation, enabling the device to close entirely flat. Complementing this enhancement is the introduction of a larger cover display on the Z Flip5, which expands the range of tasks achievable without requiring the phone to be fully opened.
A notable challenge in the foldable smartphone arena revolves around the fragility and sensitivity of the display, which has impeded widespread adoption. Samsung has effectively tackled this issue by incorporating the latest Gorilla Glass Victus 2 on the Z Flip 5. The device maintains its existing 6.7-inch Dynamic 2X AMOLED panel, boasting Full HD+ resolution and an impressive 120Hz refresh rate. The display delivers vivid visuals, sharp imagery, seamless motion, and exceptional responsiveness. Additionally, the support for HDR10 enhances the overall viewing experience, elevating it to a new level.
The most prominent addition is the newly integrated 3.4-inch cover screen situated on the phone’s exterior. This screen functions as an always-on display, showing essential information like time and notifications. Notably, it features an eight-button quick settings panel for convenient Wi-Fi toggling and other functions, although customization options are lacking. The cover display also presents a collection of practical widgets, offers access to a full keyboard for message responses, and even permits the use of a limited selection of apps, such as WhatsApp, without necessitating the full opening of the phone.
Continuing its commitment to security, the Z Flip5 retains the side-mounted fingerprint sensor seen in previous iterations of the Flip series. This decision aligns with the ongoing challenges associated with implementing an in-display fingerprint sensor seamlessly.
Software and Performance
The Galaxy Z Flip5 is driven by Samsung’s One UI 5.1, which is built on Android 13. This fresh iteration of One UI introduces notable alterations in both aesthetics and functionality, resulting in a smoother experience and an array of practical additions. Among the noteworthy enhancements are a more adaptable lock screen, intelligent widget suggestions, an edge panel, and AI capabilities within the camera application. However, it’s important to note that the device lacks support for Samsung’s DeX mode, which transforms the phone into a comprehensive productivity tool. This omission, while consistent with previous Flip models, is an aspect we hope Samsung will address in the next iteration.
One UI 5.1 takes the cover display’s utility a step further. In addition to the anticipated notification checks, numerous widgets provide control over music playback, alarms, weather updates, timers, and calendar management. Impressively, the Cover Screen even facilitates capturing selfies using the front camera. Samsung maintains a commitment to introducing fresh widgets, promising an ever-evolving and enhanced Cover Screen experience over time.
Moving to performance, the Galaxy Z Flip5 is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 SoC, which brings a notable improvement over the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 that powers the Flip4. The phone handles daily tasks with ease. The Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 has effective heat management and efficiency, allowing the phone to maintain a full day of use despite a smaller battery.
While the Flip5’s softer display might not be optimal for intensive gaming, the phone is capable of managing demanding titles without encountering performance issues. It also does well in leading benchmarks like the Antutu V10 and GeekBench 6.
Camera and Battery
The Galaxy Z Flip5 features dual 12MP sensors on the rear, while the main display hosts a 10MP sensor for selfies and video calls. Samsung has maintained the same camera arrangement that has been a staple in the Flip series for the past two generations. In our testing the primary camera performed remarkably well under well-lit conditions, capturing intricate details with vibrant hues and a solid dynamic range.
The ultra-wide-angle camera produces satisfactory photos, although there is a noticeable barrel distortion and a visible lack of detail at the peripheries. In low-light scenarios, the camera does well with the AI-assisted Night mode to enrich colors and minimize noise. The primary camera manages to deliver sharp images with noteworthy detail and dynamic range, even in dim lighting environments.
Close-up shots of both individuals and objects are characterized by meticulous detail, precise edge recognition, and a pleasing depth-of-field effect. Portraits, too, come out good across varying lighting conditions. However, when comparing selfie performance, the primary camera emerges as the preferable choice due to its ability for capturing finer details and producing sharper images.
As for the battery, the Galaxy Z Flip5 houses a 3,700mAh cell with support for 25W wired charging. This new handset benefits from the updated SoC, which significantly enhances battery performance in comparison to the Z Flip4. On a typical workday with moderate use, the phone easily lasts for more than 20 hours. However, with heavy usage, you may need to charge it more than once during the day. Using a third-party PD charger, the Flip5 takes around 2 hours to fully recharge the battery. This can be sped up a bit using Samsung’s own fast charging brick.
Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 Review – The Verdict
The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip5 packs notable updates that effectively bridge the divide between itself and its competitors. The polished design, robust camera, and reliable software combine to enhance the phone’s overall appeal.
A notable update is the phone’s ability to fold completely flat, eliminating the gap that was previously present. Additionally, the large cover display makes the phone more practical for daily use. However, it’s important to note that there is still room for refinement, particularly in the charging tech and the software related to the cover display.
Overall, the Galaxy Z Flip5 unquestionably positions itself as a safer and more appealing option among competitors. It is poised to maintain its status as a leading choice among flip phones. Nonetheless, it’s worth noting that it’s no longer the sole contender in this arena. We hope that Samsung has substantial changes in the pipeline for the future to stay ahead of the curve.