Samsung Galaxy Fold Preview: the Future Phone is now fixed

Samsung is the first company to launch a foldable phone to the masses and it's a taste of the future.

Actually, wait... we said the same thing back in April when Samsung was first preparing the launch of the Galaxy Fold. So what's changed? Back then, just as it was about to launch, testers found its design was compromised and debris entered through tiny holes in the phone causing the phone to fail catastrophically after just several days of use. Luckily, the affected units were not ones shipped to actual consumers, but were instead devices handed out to the media. Samsung took all of those devices back, went back to the drawing board and now, in September, it's finally ready with the final and (hopefully) fixed version of the Galaxy Fold.

If you have seen the early coverage, you should know that this is essentially the same phone that we saw in April. Nothing has changed in terms of specs and features: the Galaxy Fold that launches now still rocks the same Snapdragon 855 chip it used to have, along with the same 12GB of RAM, 512GB of storage. The screens are the same tiny, 4.6" AMOLED screen on the front, and the same, massive, 7.3" AMOLED screen on the inside that is the star of the show. And yes, the nearly $2,000 price tag has not changed either. So there are no changes, but there sure are fixes.

The fixes

Samsung explained that it has made 3 important fixes to ensure the Galaxy Fold will withstand the test of time:

  1. No more peeling what looks like a screen protector. The plastic part that is an integral part of the screen (the same one that people originally mistakenly thought was a screen protector) is now tucked underneath. This ensures no one will have access to it in case a sudden urge to remove this part appears.
  2. No more debris entering from the top and bottom areas around the hinge. Samsung has introduced tiny caps at the top and the bottom right where there used to be a tiny gap where debris could enter the screen and damage it.
  3. No more debris entering from the sides of the hinge. Samsung has minimized the already tiny gap between the hinge and the front and back covers of the phone even further. This is another way to ensure debris does not enter the phone.

And then, there are some not so obvious changes that still make a difference: for example, previously touching the main screen felt a bit flimsy, as if there were tiny bubbles of air underneath and it just felt a tiny bit... wobbly! Now, Samsung has added layers of metal underneath the display to strengthen it and make it feel more solid to the touch. It's a subtle change, but one that is hugely appreciated.

The company has also added one more feature on the software front: the three Android navigation buttons (the home, back and recents keys) are now moved to stay at the bottom right part of the screen by default. This makes it much easier for people to reach all three keys with one hand. Left handed people can change the position to the bottom left, and you can still go in the settings and choose to have them at the center, but this really seems like the least convenient position.

Is the new Galaxy Fold "The Future Phone"?

In many ways, yes! In an endless sea of lookalike phones, the Galaxy Fold is different, it's new, it's exciting. The large screen is such a joy for browsing (we even wondered if we should switch to the desktop version of sites), for gaming, for maps, for images, for video... pretty much for anything and everything.

Split-screen multitasking on the Galaxy Fold is something that people will actually do, unlike the very limited experience that is available on current phones with their smaller screens. You can have up to three apps (plus a floating fourth one on top), but we were just happy to have two apps in a usable size side by side.

The crease is there and you can see it (more under certain angles, less at other angles), and you can also feel it by touch, but it's not a dealbreaker and you quickly get used to it. The same applies to the notch, which seems quite big at the beginning and then you focus on the screen, and don't pay much attention to it.

Samsung Galaxy Fold: The Specs

Samsung has gone all out with specs on the Galaxy Fold with 12GB of RAM and 512 gigs of storage, and we feel that it could have gone with a bit less on-board storage, but that would have saved maybe a couple of hundred dollars. We don't blame it for going with the best specs, though: multitasking on this phone will be much more common and this is one feature that requires a lot of resources.

What we are a bit surprised by is the fact that we see basically the same camera setup as on the Galaxy S10 here. New iPhones and Pixel phones are right around the corner, and despite its troubles Huawei continues innovating in cameras, while Samsung seems to be inert, something that is hard to forgive on such an insanely expensive device where you expect to see the very, very best of everything.

Battery Life

The big unknown

With a 4,380mAh battery inside and a huge screen that would surely draw much more power than your average phone, the Galaxy Fold seems to have a battery size that might turn out to be insufficient.

We are looking forward to testing its battery life in detail soon and we have nothing to share about it so far, but this is one particularly interesting aspect of the Fold.

Naturally, it will come with a fast charger in the box and it does support wireless charging.

Price and Release Date

Despite the few month delay, Samsung is not dropping the price of the Galaxy Fold: it's still projected to be around the $2,000 mark.

The release date is set for September 6th in the company's home market, Korea, and interestingly, the second wave of markets to get it will include the UK, Germany, France, and Singapore on September 18th. The United States will get a non-5G version of the Galaxy Fold at a later date. We don't know the reasons behind such a delay for the US, but obviously the company wants to be certain that this new iteration of the Fold will actually prove to be durable.

Final Words

The Samsung Galaxy Fold is a phone unlike any other.

It is a proof that Samsung can innovate and that it is the true pioneer of this new foldable form factor that holds so much promise. But at a price of $2,000, don't expect the Galaxy Fold to sell in huge quantities. As much as we love it, we were also a bit surprised that months after the failed April launch, Samsung has not given us new software that would highlight the benefits of the large screen even better. Nor has it improved the cameras, and you are basically getting the same camera experience as on the Galaxy S10 series, just as the next generation of smartphone cameras is about to arrive. Last, but not least, we are not fully convinced the Galaxy Fold will survive the wear and tear that phones go through.

Put simply, we can't justify spending $2,000 on this first-gen Galaxy Fold in a reasonable, argumented way, but in a purely emotional one? Hell yeah, it's a freaking foldable phone in real life! This may well be the future and if your wallet can forgive you the spending, you will love the Galaxy Fold to bits.

Related phones

Galaxy Fold
  • Display 7.3 inches
    2152 x 1536 pixels
  • Camera 12 MP (Triple camera)
    10 MP front
  • Hardware Qualcomm Snapdragon 855, 12GB RAM
  • Storage 512GB, not expandable
  • Battery 4380 mAh
  • OS Android 9.0 Pie
    Samsung One UI



21. tokuzumi

Posts: 2029; Member since: Aug 27, 2009

Design definitely looks better and more polished. I appreciate how Samsung is not afraid to publicly admit they've goofed, and go back to the drawing board. They did this with the Note 7, and now the Galaxy Fold. Granted the Fold was more of a soft launch, whereas the Note 7 was widespread release across the world.

11. toyboyz

Posts: 235; Member since: Jan 22, 2010

It's not fixed, I don't care it's not

9. mackan84

Posts: 716; Member since: Feb 13, 2014

I like the fixes. Good job Samsung. I’ll probably never buy a foldable until it’s a glass screen. Questionable if I would anyways, because it seems to fragile to me, but I guess it’s the market who is going to decide that for me. In 5 years I might not have a choice.

6. JayBEE

Posts: 182; Member since: Apr 03, 2014

SD Card support or nah?

3. apple-rulz

Posts: 2198; Member since: Dec 27, 2016

“It is a proof that Samsung can innovate and that it is the true pioneer of this new foldable form factor that holds so much promise.” Clearly the author is a member of the Samsung Defense force, to write such untrue drivel. Royole came out first with a bendable smart device, Royole is the true pioneer, and they’re a startup! Here Samsung, with all their billions, has to cancel their first attempt because it was poorly designed and engineered. I’m not knocking Samsung, I’m just keeping the fanboyism in check with facts.

4. sgodsell

Posts: 7676; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

Why even mention that Royole device, because it's not sold outside of China. Plus Samsung, Sony, and LG have been working on foldable panels for years. Even back as far as 2011. Samsung's will be the first foldable sold in North America, and Europe.

5. jellmoo

Posts: 2699; Member since: Oct 31, 2011

So because another group also launched a different type of foldable phone that somehow invalidates any innovation on the part of Samsung? Are you under the impression that Samsung whipped this device up only after the Flexpal was released and they had a chance to play with it? That Samsung didn't spend a ton on R&D to make this thing? Your facts are silly and designed to support the narrative in your head. I'm no huge Samsung fan and have no desire to own this device, but I can certainly appreciate the time, effort and ingenuity it takes to try something different and implement improvements when influencers point out defects.

8. joshuaswingle

Posts: 774; Member since: Apr 03, 2018

Sorry, but Royole's product is quite rubbish. It was created to grab headlines. Samsung's is actually usable. Just because you do something first doesn't mean it's good. If this was Apple instead of Samsung you wouldn't have the same complaint.

10. apple-rulz

Posts: 2198; Member since: Dec 27, 2016

Royole’s product is quite rubbish? How did Samsung do first time releasing the Fold?

14. cmdacos

Posts: 4421; Member since: Nov 01, 2016

Better than Royale's final product.

15. sgodsell

Posts: 7676; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

People physically ripped off the plastic on the screen. Therefore damaging the fold. They thought it was something they could just remove. Plus dirt could go under the display. We all get that. But since those things are fixed. The rest of the OS, and apps that support the fold, others did reviews on the original fold, and it actually got rave reviews for everything else.

1. gadgetpower

Posts: 335; Member since: Aug 23, 2019

3rd gen maybe the best to get one.

2. sgodsell

Posts: 7676; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

"What we are a bit surprised by is the fact that we see basically the same camera setup as on the Galaxy S10 here." The Galaxy fold has 6 cameras. The S10 doesn't have that many cameras. The fold even has a depth sensor camera on the front. The S10 doesn't have a depth sensor camera, or 3 cameras in the front. The S10 has the same three cameras on the back as the fold. But to say they are basically the same is wrong. Samsung even has software for the fold to capture any 3D object, so you can print it out to a 3D printer later on. Why not try out that stuff.

12. Dr.Phil

Posts: 2576; Member since: Feb 14, 2011

Actually you’re wrong. The Galaxy S10+ does feature a 8MP depth sensor camera on the front along with a 10 MP camera. Also, to say that this device has “3 front facing cameras” is misleading at best. The one front facing camera is separate from the other two as you can only use it when the device is closed. I would more accurately categorize this as a 1 or 2 front facing camera depending on whether you are using the device opened or closed.

13. sgodsell

Posts: 7676; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

I think you missed the point. This fold has 6 physical cameras. So to say it's the same as the S10 is just wrong.

16. Dr.Phil

Posts: 2576; Member since: Feb 14, 2011

Besides the additional front facing camera which I explained above is only to serve as an additional camera for when it is folded, it is the exact same cameras as the S10+. The Fold was announced at the same time as the S10 so of course it has the same cameras. There is nothing revolutionary or new here. Would you rather the author say: it has 5 of the same exact cameras as the Galaxy S10+ with the addition of one front facing camera for when the device is folded?

17. Mike88

Posts: 438; Member since: Mar 05, 2019

Who are you lying to? The galaxy Fold is just an impractical S10. It just had one selfie camera so it’s even worse than S10+. Once it’s opened it’s a useless mini tablet but huge phone and as closed it’s not even a phone in today’s standard. Even their Note 10+ is better than this crap. Plus it has a failure tag on it so no one is gonna buy it. Yes some youtubers will get it for free from Samsung and some fake sales number from Korea their hometown but that’s it. They can’t fool the real buyers.

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

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