Relax, you don't need to buy the Samsung Galaxy Fold

This article may contain personal views and opinion from the author.
Relax, you don't need to buy the Samsung Galaxy Fold
The Samsung Galaxy Fold is a truly remarkable device. A futuristic phone that comes straight from a techie's dreams, and that Samsung has teased for years. A display that folds can now finally be in the hands of the common users out there! That's a huge deal.

It also helps that it packs absolutely awesome hardware — it's easily more powerful than many laptops out there — and it looks like a jewel of industrial design. But it also costs a bunch of jewels as well... $1,980 for a phone? Does one really want to spend that much?

Now, I am pretty sure that there is nothing I can say to the early adopters out there who happen to be well off. You have the money, you love tech, you are a Samsung fan, and you must have it — yeah, your mind is probably set on it already.

But, to those that are super close to pulling the trigger, but still feel hesitant to do so, let me say... "Hold off on this one, guys".

And no, this is not about the recent "foldgate" debacle (I'm just kidding, I hope the term "foldgate" doesn't pick up), where some Galaxy Folds broke down because their owners may or may not have tampered with the protective layer of the screen. No, there are a bunch of reasons I believe you shouldn't go spending $2k on this phone. Let me lay them out here!

It's basically a portable tablet


Relax, you don't need to buy the Samsung Galaxy Fold

They call it a "foldable phone", but I see the Galaxy Fold as more of an Android tablet. With how hideously small the outside screen is, it only makes sense that you will spend most of your time with this device using it in unfolded mode. This pretty much makes it a 7-inch Android tablet, which happens to be able to fit in your pocket and take the occasional call.

Undeniably, this is cool. But is it $1,980 cool? Not to mention, the software experience on Android tablets doesn't have stellar reputation.

It offers nothing better than the Galaxy S10+


Relax, you don't need to buy the Samsung Galaxy Fold

Aside from the fact that it has a bigger display, you pretty much get everything you can get with the cheaper Galaxy S10+ here — it's powered by the same processor and has the very same cameras. Fine, the Galaxy Fold has 12 GB of RAM while the Galaxy S10+ "only" offers 8 GB... which is still overkill. I can even get cheeky here and say "The Galaxy S10+ still has a headphone jack!", but let's not go there.

In fact, I'll do you one better — the Galaxy S10 5G (yet to be released) will come with a ToF camera on top of featuring all the cameras from the Galaxy S10+. Meaning, if camera experience is what you are after (and most smartphone fans are), the S10 5G will actually have something more special to offer than the Galaxy Fold!

That screen won't stay pristine for long


Image courtesy of Jon Rettinger

Image courtesy of Jon Rettinger


No, I am not talking about the recent scandal where some pundits damaged the screen by removing its top layer. I do fear that this layer will be capable of getting scratches all on its own.

How?

Well, it's plastic. In order to get the folding effect — it has to be. That's where our technologies are at, that's perfectly understandable. But this still means that any type of contact with hard items or even random debris will scratch it much faster than you would like.

Yes, there's the argument of "The phone folds inwards, so the screen is protected when you are not using it!". I am not convinced — when closed, the Galaxy Fold still has a tiny gap formed by the hinge, revealing a hollow tunnel, which will allow any debris to travel straight through the inside of the phone (grazing past that plastic display in the meantime).

Relax, you don't need to buy the Samsung Galaxy Fold


You can be sure that hard particles will constantly be finding their way there. Murphy's law states that all dust, sand, and lint in the vicinity will find its way to that tunnel whenever your phone is in your pocket, on a table, or even on your nightstand. This plastic layer will not look pristine for very long.

Constantly being paranoid about checking my pocket for anything at all before putting the Galaxy Fold in there, and then still being heartbroken when I open it up and see that dust found its way to the screen is not the $1,980 experience I would like to have... or that I would recommend to anyone.

Oh yeah, it also doesn't support screen protectors, as per Samsung's own guidelines, so that option is out the window at this time.

It's a first generation device


Relax, you don't need to buy the Samsung Galaxy Fold

Yes, it has been said time and time again. "Don't buy 1st gen tech unless you are willing to deal with some headaches". First gen is usually more expensive than later iterations, it comes with a bunch of kinks that need to be ironed out (crease joke right here... I missed it), and may or may not be fundamentally flawed in some manner, which was not immediately apparent.

Despite the fact that it's available for purchase, the Galaxy Fold is still very much an experimental or even a "concept" device. If history is anything to go by, the second generation of the Fold (assuming the concept lives on) will very quickly fix some of the major flaws the first one had and might even cost less out the gate.

So, unless you are a wealthy techie, my suggestion is to spend your money elsewhere. Hey, it can still be Samsung products — get a Galaxy S10 and a Galaxy Tab S4 and you will still have a killer Samsung experience! For less!

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. Guseinguliev

Posts: 75; Member since: Mar 04, 2019

The author describes that this is a smartphone for the homeless and it will always cost to the dumpster. those who give for a smartphone, these people are wealthy and they do not work in factories in the mines.

4. TheOracle1

Posts: 1897; Member since: May 04, 2015

I can afford one but won't be buying simply because of the tiny front screen which would account for 85% of my use. Samsung will probably sell every one they can make (assuming the screen issue is isolated) because there are many people who buy these type of phones for the prestige factor. The same way people choose a Bentley over a Lexus. It may not be the best but it makes a statement. P.S. That notch is also a deal breaker.

2. Valdomero

Posts: 626; Member since: Nov 13, 2012

Buying 1st gen tech is like gambling, you might win or lose. This time people lost almost $2k for this 1st gen tech.

9. oldskool50

Posts: 460; Member since: Mar 29, 2019

There reviewers didn't spend a dime on these pre-production units. No one who has actually bought one, has even had an issue, because none of them have one yet. The device isn't available to the public until later this month. The businessmen and nerds who have pre-ordered, am sure are hoping final production items will have these issues fixed. I think this was a good move to at last see what they may have well known inside. Out of the 3 problems I saw, only one is immiately fixable. It says on the box to not remove the protective film on the display. Its not a screen protector. @ of the reviewers either purposely removed it to see what happen, or didn't see the message on the box. Samsung needs to fix that by placed a huge large paper with lettering inside the phone saying, don't remove the protective film. Dust getting into the hinge based on this design can't be readily fix. FAIL! Dust getting under the film via the hinge is not readily fixable. FAIL! if anyone buys it, they need ot be extra careful. if I have to be that extra careful with it, then I don't want it. It's overpriced crap for the forseeable future until they make several design revisions. But I'm no being to critical.. I know version 2.0 will be much better. I'm NEVER gonna buy one no matter what version it is.

3. Miodrag23

Posts: 9; Member since: Nov 09, 2018

Relax, you don't need to read PhoneArena articles

5. Dr.Phil

Posts: 2249; Member since: Feb 14, 2011

I’m starting to see less and less of the benefit of having one. And the reason I say that is because I looked at some reviews and when you are watching YouTube vids sideways, the notch cuts into the content pretty dramatically. Also, the screen is supposedly a 7.9 inch display although the realistic space is smaller due to the notch. You can buy a Samsung A80 that’s coming out with a 6.7 inch display. I just don’t see the benefit of a slightly larger display even if it is a 4:3 aspect ratio. When they start folding out to 9 inch tablets, that’s when they’ll be worthwhile in my opinion.

6. oldskool50

Posts: 460; Member since: Mar 29, 2019

It never had a benefit to begin with. A 9" folding tablet likely isn't gonna happen because would be too big. I mean take a 9" tablet and fold it 50% and see how big its gonna be.

7. yalokiy

Posts: 882; Member since: Aug 01, 2016

Seems like all the media is trying to convince everyone that the fold is bad.

14. scarface21173

Posts: 631; Member since: Aug 17, 2014

Youtubers are in the buisness to make money, more views = money and subscribers saying bad things about the fold made people a lot of cash.

8. izim1

Posts: 1591; Member since: Feb 04, 2013

Someone has to buy it, otherwise the tech wont advance. No big corporation is going to spend money on advancing tech that doesn't sell.

11. shonasof

Posts: 4; Member since: Mar 18, 2019

Considering that Samsung sold out online, it would appear that sales aren't an issue.

18. Larry_ThaGr81

Posts: 489; Member since: May 26, 2011

Sales won't be an issue in the beginning because most people don't do their homework. Eventually, word will get around and sales will drop off unless Samsung makes a major revision that can eliminate all issues with the film for the primary display.

19. Larry_ThaGr81

Posts: 489; Member since: May 26, 2011

If the corporations do their homework then they surely won't spend money on a device that can so easily be rendered useless.

12. Poptart2828

Posts: 307; Member since: Jan 23, 2018

Can't wait to own one. Very attractive device at a reasonable price.

15. nodes

Posts: 1151; Member since: Mar 06, 2014

The fact that it's a foldable tablet not foldable phone is very underrated. When it's in phone mode, it's barely useable, it's very thick, bezels-galore, and heavy not really a one-handed friendly despite small screen which against the point of foldable phone in the first place. A reviewer said it's basically a glorified lockscreen is pretty accurate.

16. albert0000

Posts: 10; Member since: Apr 15, 2019

Can’t wait to get mine

17. Larry_ThaGr81

Posts: 489; Member since: May 26, 2011

I'm a huge Samsung supporter. I understand wanting to stay ahead of the curve in terms of cutting edge technology. However, this is shaping up to be the most disappointing Samsung device since they decided to enter into the smartphone/tablet market. This is nothing short of disgraceful for them to put a smartphone/tablet, whatever you want to call it priced just shy of $2000 out on the market that can be reduced to a brick through normal consumer practices on day 1 of having the device.

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

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