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Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 Review: An unbeatable foldable phone worth every penny

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 Review: An unbeatable foldable phone worth every penny

Samsung has continued with the same – 6.2-inch outer cover screen and 7.6-inch full screen when unfolded. Yet even the minutest changes to the design improved the user experience.

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 Review: An unbeatable foldable phone worth every penny Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 Review: An unbeatable foldable phone worth every penny

Specs: 6.2-inch covers display AMOLED 2X (2316 x 904 (HD+), 7.6-inch inside screen Dynamic AMOLED 2X (2176 x 1812p), Rear Camera - 50MP + 12 MP + 10 MP, 10MP cover camera, 4MP under display camera, Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1, 12GB RAM, 256GB ROM, 5G, Bluetooth, Type-C, 4400mAh battery 

Price:Rs 1,54,999 

In the Box: Fold 4, cable 

Review:  

If the first Fold was an experiment, Fold 2 was a refinement, Fold 3 turned out to be better than its previous iterations, and this year’s Fold 4 is perfection. Last year, I had said ‘there was nothing quite like the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 5G’, literally. But Samsung has yet again pushed the boundaries and done the unimaginable - perfected the almost perfect foldable out in the market today. 

Design: 

Samsung has continued with the same – 6.2-inch outer cover screen and 7.6-inch full screen when unfolded. Yet even the minutest changes to the design improved the user experience. One might think 8 grams does not mean much, but for a smartphone, and that too foldable which is on the heavier side, it does. Bringing down the weight to 263 grams makes it easier to hold the Fold 4 for longer (without stressing the wrist). It has shed 3.1mm in length and gained 2mm in width but overall is more ergonomic to hold.  

So, when folded, the thickness is about 16mm thick, and when unfolded it is just 6.4mm. The best thing is the controls - housed on the right edge - the power control (also bundling fingerprint scanner) along with volume - and the position remains the same, regardless of the phone being folded or unfolded. 

For the price it comes for, water and dust resistance should be a must. And while the phone comes with IP68 certification which makes it water-resistant, dust continues to remain its kryptonite. Only if Samsung can fix it, no other foldable will be able to come to close the Fold 4. 

Cover Screen: 

The cover screen on the Fold 3 was a little cramped, but Samsung has fixed it this time around. The slightly wide outer screen - 6.2-inch screen Dynamic AMOLED 2X - is just about a smartphone in itself. Samsung hasn’t cut down corners as the screen supports a 120Hz refresh rate and is protected with Corning Gorilla Glass Victus. The display has got stunning clarity and brightness, superb sunlight legibility and above all is comfortable to be used with one hand including typing emails and messages using the QWERTY keyboard.  

Unfolding Fold:  

Unfolding the fold opens up to a mini tablet with  a 7.6-inch screen, just perfect for almost anything and everything. For the inside screen, Samsung has used a QXGA+ AMOLED panel that does not compromise on brightness, colour or touch. And with stunning brightness peaking 1200 nits, it scales between 1Hz to 120Hz. A significant improvement has been the crease on the inside display where the phone folds, which was conspicuous till last year. In Fold 4, while it is still noticeable, it’s almost difficult to spot in dark mode, resulting in a seamless display experience. This stunningly large display is also great for everything - reading PDFs, browsing the web, streaming videos, gaming, you name it.  

Multitasking is the key: 

Good for everything - work and play - Samsung has tweaked the software to bring in some utility goodies. Take, for instance, the Task Bar that appears at the bottom when using the inside display. This makes it simple to launch apps without interfering with the already running apps.  I was able to assign a part of the screen just by dragging and dropping the app over an existing app. The Fold 4 can handle three apps to be in the multi-view mode simultaneously. This elevates the multitasking experience. So does the continue to the cover screen option, which was turned off by default. So be it checking my emails, browsing the web or in between a call, everything appeared seamlessly on the cover screen. The split keyboard was super convenient to type long emails and even documents (in my case articles). It was so convenient and comfortable that I ditched my laptop to file articles from Business Today’s India @ 100 Economy Summit in New Delhi last week.  

Interestingly, the stiff hinge holds it firmly at almost any angle. The Flex mode – reminisces the good old Nokia’s Communicator days. The screen was on the left half and the keyboard right, and I could comfortably hold or place it on any surface to type. There are more beta features under the Labs for enhancing multitasking. Such as activating split-screen multitasking or the pop-up Floating Window mode. All this multitasking was powered by the flagship Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 processor paired with 12GB of RAM. Most of the apps including Outlook, and Gmail have been optimised but there were a few, not so popular ones, which were not. For instance, Tanishq wasn’t. And not just multitasking but it handled whatever task was thrown at it without any lag, including power-hungry games, and image and video editing. Overall, it didn’t heat up or there wasn’t any stutter.  

  

Nailing photography:  

A foldable, this appealing, needs an equally exciting camera that can complement it and make the entire package fascinating. On that front, this phone doesn’t disappoint.  

The rear camera setup houses a 50MP main camera along with 12 MP ultra-wide and a 10MP telephoto lens with 3x optical and 30x Space zoom. I constantly found myself capturing shots of Delhi’s evening sky with hues of yellow, orange and pink with both the primary sensor as well as the ultra-wide. In the colour and details department, Fold 4’s camera did justice to my terrace garden where be it the purple and pink morning glory flower, white hibiscus or the deep red pomegranate flowers, the colours popped out and even the minutest of details were captured perfectly. This phone came for review just a couple of days before Independence Day and I was able to put the telephoto lens to test by zooming in on the TV Tower visible from my terrace. Well-lit in the shades of Indian flags, the tones of orange, white and green were bang on. And the flawless portrait shots can confuse anybody for it being captured by a professional. The Fold 4 lives up to Samsung’s claims of night photography. Even with very low light indoors, the night mode results were rather impressive. Most importantly there wasn’t any noticeable noise either. Other than the regulars, there are plenty of modes one can experiment with. Then there is the 10MP cover screen camera for selfies and also an in-display camera that might go unnoticeable if you don’t do a video call or tried capturing a selfie with the Fold 4 open.  

A battery that lasts:  

The phone sports a 4,400mAh battery, the same as last year’s Fold 3. I was rather sceptical if it would last through a work day. I was in for a surprise as the phone managed to stay on even after dinner time. It isn’t accompanied by the charging adapter. Something you might have to invest in if you don’t have one already.    

Verdict: 

Samsung's Galaxy Z Fold 4 is a refined foldable, which is hard to beat. This top-of-the-line phone—quite expectedly—leaves many other flagships miles behind in terms of performance, and even the overall package. For 1,54,999, I found it worthy of my money. 

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