Samsung’s duo of foldable phones are very different in appearance, but which one would suit you best? We compare them head-to-head in order to find out.
The foldable form factor has injected some much-needed creativity into smartphone design, and added a whole new dimension of performance for mobile users. If you need help choosing between the book-like Fold and the clamshell Flip, check our detailed breakdown to find out which one best meets your needs.
The design is the most striking aspect of each of these smartphones, and each of them is rather different than the other so this is arguably the crucial decision point in choosing between the devices.
The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 has a format a little like that of a book, first showing a small but usable smartphone screen on its outer cover before opening vertically to reveal a much larger inner screen. By contrast, the Flip is very small in its folded state, packing away neatly and conveniently, and when opened along its horizontal crease it is more reminiscent of a standard smartphone.
You preference here depends on whether you’d like your foldable to be capable of offering a true tablet-like experience, or whether you’d like to pack it away discreetly in your pocket.
Evidently, the two contrasting designs have significant ramifications for the screens of each phone.
The Fold’s outer screen measures 6.2-inches, similar to many standard smartphones, and you can perform all the tasks you normally would with this display. Then, butterfly-like, it opens up to reveal a very large 7.6-inch screen that’s got HDR 10+ support. Both inner and outer AMOLED displays boast 120Hz refresh rates and pin-sharp resolutions.
The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 is not capable of much when it’s all clammed up; you might be able to read incoming texts but little else is possible on its tiny 1.2-inch screen. When opened up, it’s a different story altogether; awaiting you is a 6.7-inch AMOLED panel that offers a 120Hz refresh rate, HDR10+ support, and 1200 nits maximum brightness.
Both devices show off stand-out screens, but they also sadly share the flaw of having a visible crease at the point where they fold in half.
The Galaxy Z Fold 3 comes up trumps with is photographic abilities, offering a triple array consisting of three 12-megapixel sensors; one is a standard wide camera, another is ultrawide with 123-degree field of view, and the third is a 2x zoom telephoto lens. That’s not all; due to its unique design it packs not one but two selfie cameras, with the one on the outer screen clocking in at 10-megapixels, and the very fancy under-display camera on the inside being 4-megapixels.
The Flip’s camera credentials are more modest; it’s got a dual-camera system with wide and ultrawide sensors (both 12-megapixels), and then a 10-megapixel selfie camera. It does have one neat distinguishing factor though, as you can flip it half open at a right angle and then set it down on a surface to take a carefully-posed selfie portrait.
Performance & Battery
Both of these foldables have the same processor, the Snapdragon 888, which guarantees a high level of performance plus 5G connectivity. As for battery, there are big differences in the specs (the Fold packs in a 4400mAh while the Flip can only manage 3300mAh), but the different demands of each form factor mean that they give about the same amount of endurance; each one should see you through a day’s moderate usage, but little more than that.
Though the performance and battery may not be all that difference, those key disparities in camera and display size mean that the prices diverge significantly.
The Galaxy Z Flip 3 costs a considerable £949 ($999), which is hardly an amount to sniff at, but the Galaxy Z Fold simply blows it out of the water, retailing at a ridiculous £1599 ($1799). To put it mildly, these are not phones for bargain hunters, and it may take quite some time before foldables become more affordable; at the moment they are not just smartphones but also status symbols.
Vote: Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 vs Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3
Now that you’ve soaked in our summary of each of these ingenious devices, it’s time for you to take your pick and let us know which one you would choose over the other in our readers’ poll: