Samsung Galaxy Fold: 12 things you should know about the foldable phone

Samsung Galaxy Fold: 12 things you should know about the foldable phone
The Samsung Galaxy Fold, the dream phone-tablet hybrid of the future, is now here.

It's almost hard to believe that the Galaxy Fold is a real device: it was a tech dream that we used to see in sci-fi movies and even when Samsung showed it to the public it seemed like a distant prototype. But no: pre-orders on AT&T are now live and for nearly $2,000 (ouch!) you can get this piece of the future now and start using it right away.

So... what has changed since Samsung gave us a first glimpse at its Galaxy Fold? First of all, we got to learn a lot more about it! Samsung only showed a prototype that no one could touch and now the device is out in the wild. This means it's time to summarize the 12 essential details that you must know about the Galaxy Fold before you press that pre-order button. Read on!

#1: The crease is real

It's definitely not subtle

Image courtesy of Jon Rettinger

Image courtesy of Jon Rettinger


As much as the wallpapers and the promo materials make it seem like there is no crease on the Galaxy Fold, there is indeed a very noticeable gutter right in the middle of the phone. 

Is it a deal-breaker? Well, maybe for few people it will be, but while the crease is there and you can literally touch it and feel it, it's not something that disrupts the viewing experience. And since this is a big phone it does not really get in the way of typing too, so we guess that one would get used to it after a while.

#2: This is the heaviest smartphone we have ever seen!

Bar none! ...and it's not very comfortable to carry in a pocket.

Samsung Galaxy Fold: 12 things you should know about the foldable phone

What you might not realize about the Galaxy Fold is just how big and heavy it is. In fact, at nearly 10 ounces (272 g), the Galaxy Fold is noticeably heavier than even the biggest smartphones out there.

Here is a quick comparison of the weight of the Galaxy Fold and some popular phones:

  • Galaxy Fold: 9.28 oz (263 g)
  • Galaxy S10+: 6.17 oz (175 g)
  • iPhone XS Max: 7.34 oz (208 g)
  • Pixel 3 XL: 6.49 oz (184 g)
  • OnePlus 6T: 6.53 oz (185 g)

It's not just heavy: it's also literally about as big as two phones put one on top of the other. And these would be some tall phones too, making the Galaxy Fold a very uncomfortable fit in most pockets.

#3: Opening it is a two-hand experience

And it closes down with a satisfying thunk

Samsung Galaxy Fold: 12 things you should know about the foldable phone

Curiously, as complex as making a folding screen is, probably of no less importance is a mechanism that sounds as mundane as it gets: the hinge.

Thankfully, Samsung has done a really great job with the hinge on the Galaxy Fold: it snaps tightly when you close it and it opens at a perfect 180-degree angle with a satisfying click. It also feels sturdy and reliable, as evidenced by the crazy contraption of a robot that Samsung built to test the folding mechanism (see below).

Samsung Galaxy Fold: 12 things you should know about the foldable phone

#4: Fingerprint scanner doubles as a Bixby button

You will likely trigger Bixby accidentally too often

Samsung Galaxy Fold: 12 things you should know about the foldable phone

Since it takes two hands to open the Galaxy Fold, chances are that while opening it your fingers could accidentally touch the fingerprint reader on the side of the phone. Unfortunately, the fingerprint scanner also doubles as a Bixby button, meaning that - at least at first - you will likely be hearing from Bixby a bit too often.

Luckily, the latest version of Samsung's One UI allows you to go into settings and remap the Bixby button, so you can easily change it and set it to only open Bixby with a double click on the button. That is one of the first things that we would do to avoid the accidental triggers.

#5: It has two batteries on each side

Connected with the hinge

Samsung Galaxy Fold: 12 things you should know about the foldable phone

The Galaxy Fold comes equipped with two batteries, one in each side of the phone and they are connected together via the all-powerful hinge and when you combine the two cells together, you arrive at the 4,380 mAh total battery capacity on the Fold.

We have A LOT of questions about the actual battery life on this thing: the huge screen is guaranteed to draw a lot of power and we already have regular phones that approach the battery capacity on the Fold... Until we get to test the battery life, however, we do hope this phone will get us through a full day of use, but we definitely don't have our hopes for much more than that.

Last but not least, having the two battery cells on each side of the phone connected via the hinge also means that a/ battery replacement will be extremely hard

#6: The main screen is plastic

...but it folds so this should protect it from scratching

Samsung Galaxy Fold: 12 things you should know about the foldable phone

The main screen on the Galaxy Fold measures 7.3 inches and it's of the same Super AMOLED kin as the Galaxy S10 series, which means that it looks gorgeous, with deep blacks, great contrast and vibrant colors.

What you do have to know, however, is that the screen is plastic so it will scratch easier. That, however, should not be much of an issue (hopefully!) since you don't have the main screen exposed to the elements when you are carrying the phone around, and when it folds like a book it is perfectly well protected from scratches.

#7: The front screen is very narrow

It's fine for taking calls and Spotify, but for pretty much anything else you'd have to unfold it and use the main screen

Samsung Galaxy Fold: 12 things you should know about the foldable phone

We ought to say that while the main screen on the Galaxy Fold is gigantic, beautiful and impresses in a way no other phone does, the front screen is really not very useful. It's 4.6 inches in size, but it is very narrow and tall, and the actual usable screen space is much smaller than on your typical 4.6-inch phone screen.

Still, this screen is not limited in any way except for physical size: you can do everything on it.

Samsung Galaxy Fold: 12 things you should know about the foldable phone

What is striking, however, is that it seems that Samsung could have made this display bigger: currently, there are huge bezels all around the screen and in a future Galaxy Fold, this would be one area where we would like to see improvements.

#8: The notch on the main screen is big

But the screen is even bigger, so it does not get in the way all that much

Image courtesy of Jon Rettinger

Image courtesy of Jon Rettinger


Yes, you do have a notch and sure, it is gigantic, why not. Feelings aside, the notch on the main screen of the Galaxy Fold is probably the second most annoying thing about it after the crease, but it's a technical necessity and it is what holds the dual front camera system.

Do we really need a double set of cameras for selfies, first on the front screen and then here again on the main screen? Not for selfies maybe, but for video conferencing, for instance, we do, and that's why you get this somewhat redundant set of cameras and, of course, the big notch.

#9: It comes with a free pair of the truly wireless Galaxy Buds in the box

...but no headphone jack on board

Samsung Galaxy Fold: 12 things you should know about the foldable phone

There is also a free case included in the box and that's crucial: we haven't seen many third-party cases for the Galaxy Fold and you will definitely want to protect that $2,000 phone well!

Samsung Galaxy Fold: 12 things you should know about the foldable phone

#10: Continuity works great

Start doing something on the small screen, unfold the phone and continue from where you left off on the big screen


Excerpt from Samsung Galaxy Fold video by Jon Rettinger

This is one of the coolest new features on the Galaxy Fold and it seems that Samsung has worked with Google to implement continuity deep into the Android system. Basically, what it does is ensure that the moment you unfold the device, you will be transported to the exact same spot where you left off on the main screen.

This will work with Samsung and Google apps in the beginning, but we are not sure whether it will work with all of these apps from the get-go. As for third-party apps chances are that the feature will not be available at launch, but it might come later on.

#11: It comes in four colors

And you can customize the color of the hinge on some models

Samsung Galaxy Fold: 12 things you should know about the foldable phone

You have a selection of four colors for the Galaxy Fold: a classic 'Space Silver' and 'Cosmos Black' models, as well as beautiful 'Martian Green' and 'Astro Blue'. The latter two not only come with the option to customize the hinge color, but they also change their color as light is reflected off the back for a mesmerizing effect.

#12: Repairs? 

It might be easier to just replace this phone with a new one

Samsung Galaxy Fold: 12 things you should know about the foldable phone

What about the unfortunate event of a broken screen? Or a malfunctioning hinge?

We don't even want to think about that possibility, since all of this seems like such an intricate gadgetry that repairs will likely be complex: just imagine replacing the battery, something that is the equivalent of an oil change on a car, but here it seems like a daunting task considering the two cells and their connection at the hinge.

So while we don't know details about Samsung's repair policies for the Fold, we imagine that they will be costly and not always possible.

Conclusion: Despite everything, this is the freaking foldable phone from the future, here now!

Don't miss the opportunity to try it out yourself!

Samsung Galaxy Fold: 12 things you should know about the foldable phone

It might sound here that we are extremely critical of this phone and that our overall sentiment is negative, but that's not at all true. Our goal was to show you all the little compromises that Samsung made, but none of them make the Galaxy Fold less exciting. Put simply: it's the freaking foldable phone of the future and it's here now! Go ahead and give it a try if your local AT&T store has it. Should you buy it?

That's too early to tell and the $2,000 price is just crazy for a gen 1 device, but we know one thing: this phone is exciting in a way that few other devices are and in just a few years, our future selves might well look back on non-folding phones and reminisce about the primitive technology we used in the dark ages of 2019. And Samsung might just be the name associated with entering that brand new era.

Related phones

Galaxy Fold
  • Display 7.3" 1536 x 2152 pixels
  • Camera 12 MP / 10 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 855, Octa-core, 2840 MHz
  • Storage 512 GB
  • Battery 4380 mAh

FEATURED VIDEO

19 Comments

1. iloveapps

Posts: 167; Member since: Mar 21, 2019

No thanks. This is the ugliest phone in the future. Half baked.

5. scarface21173

Posts: 614; Member since: Aug 17, 2014

Apple fanboyz can only dream

17. Sammy_DEVIL737

Posts: 1492; Member since: Nov 28, 2016

Lol peaceboy is so desperate that he is crying & commenting on every Android article.

2. JRPG_Guy

Posts: 102; Member since: Jan 13, 2019

Get rid of the notch, crease, chin and forehead then you got a killer phone. Reduce the price and throw in an s pen.

11. bucknassty

Posts: 1263; Member since: Mar 24, 2017

try again in 5 years

15. JRPG_Guy

Posts: 102; Member since: Jan 13, 2019

Samsung isn't apple. I don't think I'll have to wait that long. 2 or 3 years tops

3. rsiders

Posts: 1811; Member since: Nov 17, 2011

Maybe now we'll get the Surface Phone from Microsoft.

4. Stayfly2407

Posts: 76; Member since: Dec 15, 2011

Can’t wait for mine

6. brasstax

Posts: 538; Member since: Apr 16, 2014

"It might sound here that we are extremely critical of this phone and that our overall sentiment is negative, but that's not at all true." If that was not the intention, why the need to clarify? Guilty conscience maybe?

7. eausa

Posts: 52; Member since: Feb 28, 2019

This is an amazing looking device. The more I watch videos on it, the more I want it. Awesome stuff.

8. _PHug_

Posts: 480; Member since: Oct 11, 2011

The crease wouldn't bother me if you can't see it with the screen on. Erase the notch and add in an S-Pen and I would buy. Here's hoping for the Samsung Galaxy Fold 2.

9. Limcheethiam

Posts: 68; Member since: Feb 23, 2015

within 3 month, can find it in second hand shop with 50% price discount. Then buy from there.

13. Vyshak75

Posts: 54; Member since: Mar 03, 2016

I don't think so. You know its a limited release device. So, the second hand shops can sell it on black market n stuff for higher or the same price.

10. alaw.14

Posts: 410; Member since: Sep 10, 2013

Awesome for gen 1.

12. bucknassty

Posts: 1263; Member since: Mar 24, 2017

that notch ruins it

14. jtl78

Posts: 30; Member since: Nov 19, 2012

with all of their newer phones with the ultra thin benzles, hardly an "O" for the selfie cameras and they couldn't implement this on the Galaxy Fold??? I'll wait for the 2nd gen or maybe even 3rd gen so they could get everything sorted out. And yes, a phone with a screen this wide and also the thickness, why not make the S-Pen tucked inside like the Note lines?? @Samsung, think about a way to utilize WIFI as a way to recharge the batteries so you can make slimmer batteries and reduce the thickness.

16. brasstax

Posts: 538; Member since: Apr 16, 2014

Darrkjeddi... are you getting the fold bro?

18. Sammy_DEVIL737

Posts: 1492; Member since: Nov 28, 2016

Phone? Tablet? It's Galaxy Fold.

19. Godlymansean

Posts: 266; Member since: Apr 14, 2017

Would love one, just out of my budget. awesome color options. Wireless buds!! Too cool

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