Samsung unveiled a new group of products at its virtual Unpacked event, headlined by the Galaxy Z Fold4 and Galaxy Z Flip4, along with all-new earbuds and smartwatches.
Samsung should probably just call its August event “Unfold” going forward, given that it’s now a showcase for the company’s foldable phones. Those two devices were the main focal points, though the new Galaxy Buds2 Pro and Galaxy Watch5 models do stand out on their own. We’ll be testing them all out in due course, but for now, here are the details worth noting.
Looking at the Galaxy Z Fold4
Samsung’s flagship foldable enters its fourth iteration, and its design largely follows what came before in 2021. Rather than overhaul or reimagine things, Samsung’s engineers continue to nip and tuck at the device to trim fat wherever they can. That means a slimmer and lighter hinge to reduce the overall weight of the device—without affecting how easily it opens and closes. Thinner glass for the screen, along with thinner bezels also help reduce its footprint ever so slightly.
It does sport the same 6.2-inch Dynamic AMOLED 2x in the front, plus the monster 7.6-inch Dynamic AMOLED 2x inside when you unfold it. It continues to support the S Pen Fold Edition and S Pen Pro (both sold separately), and multitasking controls through Android and Samsung’s One UI help on the productivity side of things.
The phone is equipped with a new main camera in the rear. It’s the same 50-megapixel sensor seen in the Galaxy S22+ and S22, and should produce better photos in all conditions. Apart from that, it’s the same camera array as the Fold3 had. Improved camera software may play a role in improving images, though that remains to be seen.
The Galaxy Z Fold4 will be available on August 26. It will come in graygreen, moon beige, and phantom black, and you can pre-order yours now.
Checking out the Galaxy Z Flip4
Samsung’s more affordable foldable maintains its classic flip appearance. Some aesthetic changes include a matte finish to replace the glossy one of the past, as well as a more pronounced rear camera array. The real star is probably the 1.9-inch Cover Screen when folded, letting you access a variety of apps and features without unfolding the phone. It also enables you to capture selfies using the higher quality rear camera lenses.
Inside, you get the same 6.7-inch Dynamic AMOLED 2x, albeit with thinner and tougher glass. Like the Fold4, this phone also keeps its IPX8 water resistance, so a good splash won’t ultimately hurt the device. The camera array follows the same path of the previous Fold3, except Samsung claims low-light output will be better.
Given its folding design, there is real utility to using the cameras. Positioning and placement enable you to take certain photos more easily than you would with another phone. Look for a review on the Flip4 that explores those possibilities.
Samsung will release the Galaxy Z Flip4 on August 26. It will come in bora purple, graphite, pink gold, and blue, and you can pre-order yours now.
New Galaxy Watch5
Samsung also announced two new Galaxy Watch models in the Watch5 and Watch5 Pro. They will follow the same design principles as before, except for one major difference. Neither of these two watches has the physical rotating bezel that’s been a staple of past Galaxy Watches. Instead, it’s a touch-sensitive one. The Watch5 will come in 40mm and 44mm sizes, while the Pro will be a 45mm, with Bluetooth and LTE versions across the board.
For the first time, the watches will have sapphire crystal protecting the watch face, adding extra durability to them. Titanium makes up the frame, taking another level of ruggedness to Samsung’s newest wearables. It showed a new D-Buckle band as well, hinting that it may not stick to the more traditional clasp it previously used. The lugs appear to be the same, though, so changing bands shouldn’t be a problem.
As for features, Samsung claims its advanced algorithm will detect workouts even better than before. Improvements in sleep tracking, heart rate, and blood oxygen are also involved. Samsung says it increased the surface area underneath the watch to better track everything. It also added a temperature sensor to measure skin temperature.
Both watches will run on Wear OS, like the previous ones did. It’s a modified version with Samsung’s own overlay, so will look familiar compared to the Watch4.
The Galaxy Watch5 wand Watch5 Pro will be available August 26. The Watch5 will come in graphite, silver, sapphire, and pink gold, whereas the Watch5 Pro will come in black and grey titanium. There’s also a special Golf Edition of the watch coming up. Pre-order your own Galaxy Watch5 now.
Listening to the Galaxy Buds 2
The Galaxy Buds2 Pro come with a redesigned frame that Samsung says will be far more comfortable to wear for longer periods. The case looks very similar to the previous model, and gives you an extra three charges. They will play up to five hours per charge with active noise cancellation (ANC) on, or eight hours if you leave it off. Until I test them, I can’t verify how accurate those figures are.
On the inside, Samsung will support hi-res audio with 24-bit playback where applicable. Its own Bluetooth codec will help deliver the best possible sound, depending on your source. New woofers and tweeters should produce better clarity with more power. Again, until testing proves that, it’s hard to be sure.
The ANC is supposed to be 40% better at blocking out background noise, while the ambient mode can kick in when you start talking. Not a new feature, by the way, but one that would be better if Samsung improved it, so we’ll see. The onboard mics are said to be better at picking up your voice during calls. The company even claims the Buds2 Pro are great for vlogging.
New and improved 360 Audio to emulate surround sound could be even better for movies and shows. Pretty ideal if you have a Samsung TV, as the Buds2 Pro can seamlessly pair with one.
The Galaxy Buds2 Pro will be available August 26, and come in black, white, and bora purple. Pre-order your pair now.
All of these devices launch on the same day: August 26. Pre-orders are already underway, and you can set whichever ones you want aside for yourself by going to the links listed throughout this article.
Personally the folding phones arent for me but my wife loves what she has seen of the flip and might even switch to it from iPhone next time we upgrade. I guess folding phones are marmite of the tech world, you wither love them or hate them.
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