Analysis of the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 and opinion

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analisis samsung galaxy z fold teknofilo 36.jpg
analisis samsung galaxy z fold teknofilo 36.jpg

Don’t have time to read the full review? Head directly to the Conclusions section to find out what I liked the most and what I liked the least about the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4.

Samsung is the company that has bet earlier and more intensely on the foldables. Proof of this is that, in its catalog, it has two different types of folding: the Galaxy Z Flip family with a “shell” design and the Galaxy Z Fold family with a “book” format.

Last summer, Samsung presented the fourth generation of its most advanced foldable, the Galaxy Z Fold4, which comes with interesting improvements over the previous model to make it more productive.

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 has a 6.2″ outer screen, a 7.6″ inner screen, a Snapdragon 8+ Gen1 chip, 12 GB of RAM, 256/512/1024 GB of UFS 3.1 storage, wide-angle rear cameras (50MP , f/1.8) + ultra wide angle (12MP, f/2.2) + telephoto (10MP, f/2.4), exterior front camera (10MP, f/2.2) 10MP, interior front camera (4MP f/1.8), stereo speakers with Doby Atmos, 4,400 mAh battery with charge up to 25W and water resistance.

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 is on sale at an official price of €1,799 (256GB/12GB RAM), €1,919 (512GB/12GB RAM) and €2,159 (1TB/12GB RAM), although you can find it at a lower price at online stores like Amazon.

I have had the opportunity to test and use the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 thoroughly for several weeks, and here is my in-depth review.

Sections of the analysis

  • Design
  • Screen
  • Hardware
  • Biometrics
  • Drums
  • Software
  • S Pen
  • Multimedia
  • Camera
  • calls
  • Precio
  • Conclusions

design and construction

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 maintains a design similar to that of previous models, allowing you to enjoy an almost tablet-sized screen when it is open, without giving up the comfort of a smartphone size when it is closed.

Although Samsung continues to reduce the thickness of the device in each generation, the Galaxy Z Fold4 is still a smartphone that is thicker than a conventional smartphone when it is closed, since in the hinge area it reaches a height of 15.8 mm and in the side opposite 14.2mm.

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4

This thickness is due to the fact that the two halves, each 6.3 mm thick, do not touch when the smartphone is folded, as can be seen in the image above, so the profile is wedge-shaped.

Other folding smartphones, such as the Vivo X Fold in the following image, have managed to do without this wedge shape, so I wonder why Samsung does not do the same. You will have your reasons.

Vivo X Fold

Accustomed to smartphones about 8 mm thick, the Galaxy Z Fold4 can be a bit large if you carry it in a tight pants pocket or in the inside pocket of your jacket. Its 263 grams do not go unnoticed either, although the iPhone 14 Pro Max weighs slightly less, 240 grams, and is not foldable.

Leaving aside the issue of thickness and weight, the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 presents a premium look with aluminum and glass finishes.

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 is available in a matte finish in Phantom Black, Graygreen, and Beige colors. I have had the opportunity to try the Phantom Black color, as can be seen in the photographs.

In the back we only find the camera module, which protrudes slightly from the surface and houses three cameras located vertically.

The Samsung logo is not on the back, as the company has chosen to place it on the side, etched into the metal. Not a bad idea as it stays centered when the Galaxy Z Fold4 is open and visible when it’s resting on the table

The front of the device is totally uniform and, until you press the power button, you are not aware of its 6.2″ external screen.

The Galaxy Z Fold4 now offers an outer screen with a slightly wider aspect ratio to improve the user experience, since until now it had a rather long ratio.

This makes it much easier to type as the keys are now not so close together. In addition, this also helps make it more comfortable to use the apps, since they are not normally designed for an elongated ratio.

Thanks to the reduction of the bezels and the size of the hinge, the outer screen is 2.7 mm wider, while the overall width of the phone has not increased. The overall height of the phone (not the screen) has been reduced by 3.1mm.

At the edges of the phone (both on the right when the phone is folded) we find the power button (which integrates a fingerprint reader), the volume button and the slot for nano-SIM cards.

By default, fingerprint recognition occurs when you press the power button, but it is possible to activate an option so that the phone automatically unlocks as soon as you place your finger on the reader.

However, due to the place chosen by Samsung to place the fingerprint reader, it is easy for you to accidentally touch it when carrying the phone in your hand.

After 5 unsuccessful attempts the phone locks and asks for the PIN, so you may prefer to disable automatic unlocking.

The outer screen and surface glass are protected by Gorilla Glass Victus+, the latest generation of Corning’s coating.

Sides of the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 when it is closed

When we open the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4, we are faced with a giant 7.6″ screen with narrower frames and a ratio that, again, is also wider, since the screen itself is 3 mm wider.

Still, the screen aspect is much squarer (10.8:9) than any other smartphone (current screens are usually 18:9 or 19:9). so the screen surface is much higher than that of other devices with similar diagonal lengths.

Samsung has improved the durability of the main display panel with an optimized layer structure, which helps reduce damage from external shocks.

The camera under the screen has also been improved with a new arrangement of pixels on the camera lens that makes it more invisible. In any case, the camera does not go completely unnoticed, as the pixel density just above the camera is noticeably reduced.

Below you can see how the front camera looks on the screen compared to the previous model.

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3

On a day-to-day basis, it’s hardly noticeable, but if you look closely you’ll notice a different looking circle in the camera area, especially on light, even backgrounds. When playing a game or watching a video, it goes much more unnoticed, since the background changes more quickly.

The front camera area is hardly noticeable on a daily basis

Once opened, the screen still shows the vertical crease in the center that was already present on previous models.

This fold produces a curious optical effect. If you place the screen right in front of you, this crease is not visible even with a completely blank screen. However, if you turn the phone left or right, the crease becomes visible (it’s not as visible if you turn it up or down). This makes the people next to you see the crease much more clearly than you are seeing it.

The crease to the touch is also noticeable when you drag your finger across the screen. A place where it is very noticeable is in the camera interface since to change the shooting mode it is necessary to drag your finger horizontally.

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 offers IPX8 resistance, which guarantees that the phone can resist up to 30 minutes under 1.5 meters of water. Although Samsung doesn’t recommend immersing your phone, it’s reassuring to know that you won’t be harmed if water spills on you or you accidentally fall into a pool or bathtub.

In this aspect, it is the only folding smartphone that has this protection, which is a point in favor of Samsung.

However, it does not have resistance to dust, so it is not convenient to take it to places where there may be small particles in suspension, such as the beach.

indoor display

The inner screen of the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 has a 7.6″ Dynamic AMOLED 2X panel, with a squarer ratio than what we are used to seeing in other smartphones. Its resolution is 2,176 × 1,812 pixels, so it offers a pixel density high 373 dpi.

A screen of this size is ideal for browsing the Internet, viewing photos and videos, using multiple apps at the same time, playing games in full screen, and much more. It’s like having a small tablet that you can carry in your pocket.

The screen of the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 supports HDR10 +, the format that improves the dynamic range of the HDR standard and that is mainly promoted by Samsung itself. The HDR10+ format competes with Dolby Vision, which is currently the most widely used HDR format with dynamic metadata. HDR10+ is only available on Amazon Prime Video, while Dolby Vision is supported by Netflix and others.

In addition, the panel supports dynamic tone mapping, which is dynamically altering the video to best fit the capabilities of the display. This makes it possible to improve the visual quality of both HDR and non-HDR material, for example games.

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 has a high adaptive refresh rate of up to 120 Hz. The frequency automatically adjusts from 1 to 120 Hz depending on the content displayed. In this way, battery consumption is reduced since certain static content would not benefit from a high refresh rate.

For example, when playing video games that require rapid image changes, the screen may refresh at 120 Hz. However, when watching a video, the screen may refresh at the usual 60 Hz, and drop to 30 Hz when an email is displayed on the screen. In my tests, I have only managed to go down to 24 Hz when seeing fixed displays.

The refresh rate of the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 is especially noticeable when scrolling vertically in the application drawer, the browser or in your social media feeds such as Twitter, Facebook or Instagram. Content scrolls more smoothly.

Focusing on display quality, the panel offers a color gamut that reaches 100% of the DCI-P3 color space, which is commonly used in the film industry. Samsung displays are Mobile Color Volume 100% certified by VDE Germany, which means it covers this gamut at all brightness levels.

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 has an OLED panel, which uses the same PenTile matrix that Samsung has been using for a long time, with sub-pixels arranged in a diamond pattern instead of being in rows.

Next, we are going to see the results of a set of tests carried out with the CalMAN Ultimate professional software and an X-Rite i1Display Pro colorimeter to check the quality of the screen of the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4.

For some time now, Samsung offers only two screen modes: Natural and Intense. Natural mode is the one that most naturally reflects colors in both the standard sRGB gamut and the wider DCI P3 gamut, while Vivid mode is intended to produce more vibrant, yet less realistic colors by stretching colors to the full color gamut of the panel.

Most smartphones provide one or more color gamuts but these are fixed. However, the Samsung offers automatic color management. This means that it automatically switches to the proper color gamut when displaying image content that has an ICC profile within the wide color space supported by OLED displays, so that images appear in the correct colors. This works, for example, in apps like Google Photos and Gallery.

In Natural mode, fidelity is excellent as the average error when displaying sRGB content turns out to be very low, 1.4 dE (a value below 4 dE is considered excellent and above 9 is considered unacceptable), and the maximum error turns out to be 3.2 dE, a value also very low.

The color temperature of the screen in Natural mode is 6,381ºK, quite close to the reference level of 6,500ºK, which implies a white color with hardly any color cast. In this mode, the screen covers 100% of the sRGB color space.

Natural Mode: Color Fidelity

Natural Mode: sRGB coverage

Natural Mode: Color Temperature

Natural mode: Gamma

Screen test result in Natural mode (Portrait Displays)

Vivid mode takes advantage of the full color gamut of the OLED panel, offering an impressive breadth of colors. Now, if we activate this mode, we will notice that the colors are oversaturated since the vast majority of Android apps are created thinking that the screen has been calibrated for the sRGB gamut.

That’s why Samsung calls this mode Intense. Although colors are less accurate, many people prefer to see more intense colors (even if they are not true to life) than duller realistic colors. This mode also has another important advantage and that is that it is very useful when we use the phone in broad daylight since, under the sun, the colors lose strength.

Due to the excess saturation of the colors that we have discussed, the color fidelity of the Intense mode with respect to the DCI P3 gamut is simply “good”, since the average error turns out to be 3.1 dE and the maximum error turns out to be 5.7 dE.

In this mode, the phone covers 100% of the DCI P3 color space and 142% of the sRGB color space. The color temperature is 6,839ºK, above the reference level of 6,500ºK, which implies a bluish tone that is noticeable in applications with a white background, such as the browser.

There is a certain tendency for manufacturers to make their screens blue since, instinctively, our brain associates warm colors with old things (like old paper) and cool colors with modern things.

Luckily, Samsung has added a white color adjustment called Color Balance that allows you to alter the level of red, green, and blue on the screen. In this way we can reduce the level of blue and get quite close to the ideal value of 6,500ºK.

Vivid Mode: Color Fidelity

Vivid Mode: Color Gamut vs. DCI P3

Vivid Mode: Color Temperature

Intense Mode: Gamma

Screen test result in Vivid mode (Portrait Displays)

The maximum brightness of the inner display with auto-brightness off is around 461 nits, but turning on auto-brightness mode gives you access to high-brightness mode (HBM). In this mode, I have measured a brightness of 901 nits under strong light such as the sun, which is slightly below the 1,000 nits advertised by Samsung.

In this comparative graph we reflect the maximum brightness value with the screen at 100% white, since it is the usual way to measure and compare the brightness of a screen.

The maximum brightness value with the screen illuminated at 100% is very high, although it is exceeded by some high-end smartphones. Such a high brightness ensures that you will be able to see the screen in any situation, even on the street in bright sunlight.

The black color is very deep, to the point that the colorimeter has been unable to measure any level of brightness. This means that the blacks are really black and the contrast is theoretically infinite. One advantage of such a deep black color is that when watching a movie, the black bands around the image appear completely black. Also, black pixels don’t drain battery power, so Android’s dark mode makes a lot of sense on OLED screens.

OLED screens have a peculiar behavior when viewed from an angle. On the one hand, the light emitters are closer to the surface, and this makes the contrast and brightness vary less when moving from the center, but on the other hand, the Pentile matrix causes the colors to be distorted.

In the case of the Galaxy Z Fold4, the viewing angles are wide and the colors are hardly altered when looking at the screen from an angle. However, the crease in the screen is much more visible when you look at the screen from an angle.

The screen of the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 5G has the Always On Display functionality that makes the phone show the time (with several clock designs available) and the date when the phone is locked, along with notification icons with colors and contact information (for example, your phone number or email address). The brightness level of the elements on the screen is adjusted according to the ambient light.

It is possible to configure the Always On Display screen to be active at all times, only for 10 seconds when we touch the screen or between certain hours. It is also possible to control music playback from that screen.

Now, considering that most of the time the phone is closed when not in use, the Always On Display functionality on the inner screen is not very useful unless you leave the phone unfolded on the table.

Samsung has incorporated a feature called Vision Protector that automatically adjusts blue light levels, based on the time of day, to reduce eye discomfort and help you fall asleep at night.

It offers two modes of operation: adaptive and personal. Adaptive mode automatically adjusts colors based on the time of day, with slight variations during the day and much warmer colors at night. In the personal mode, you can choose the color temperature that you like the most and the time in which it is applied (always, from dusk to dawn or your own schedule).

outer screen

Outside, we find a 6.2″ Dynamic AMOLED screen with a resolution of 2316 × 904 pixels (402 dpi) with an unusual 23.1: 9 ratio. This screen ratio is slightly wider (less elongated) than the Galaxy Z Fold3’s 25:9 ratio, making it more comfortable for reading text.

By default, the outer screen always remains off, but it is possible to activate the Always On Display functionality so that the time, date, battery level and pending notification icons are shown.

Like the inner screen, the outer screen offers a high adaptive refresh rate of up to 120 Hz, which makes scrolling and animations look smoother.

Peak brightness with auto-brightness off is around 415 nits, but it jumps to 901 nits when you turn on auto-brightness mode since you have access to high-brightness mode (HBM).

This is a value similar to that achieved with the indoor screen, and it is more than enough to see the screen outdoors without problems.

hardware and performance

Although Samsung is used to marketing two variants of its high-end smartphones, one with a Snapdragon processor and the other with Exynos, this is not the case with the Galaxy Z Fold4.

The folding smartphone comes only with a Snapdragon 8+ Gen1 processor, Qualcomm’s most powerful to date.

 

Qualcomm Snapdragon 8+ Gen1 is a 4nm SoC chip manufactured by TSMC. It integrates a “Prime Core” based on the ARM Cortex-X2 architecture up to 3.2 GHz, three performance cores based on the Cortex-A710 up to 2.5 GHz and four energy-efficient cores based on the ARM Cortex-A510 architecture up to 1.8 GHz. All cores can use the 6 MB shared level 3 cache.

Compared to the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1, the SoC is produced on TSMC’s more power-efficient 4nm process and offers higher-speed CPU and GPU cores (with lower power consumption, according to Qualcomm). ).

The built-in AI engine can deliver up to 4x faster AI performance thanks to the larger Tensor engine. The Spectra 18-Bit ISP has also undergone major improvements and is now called the Snapdragon Sight.

The integrated Adreno 730 GPU offers a 30% graphics boost compared to the previous Adreno 660.

The integrated Snapdragon X65 5G modem is also new and offers faster transfer speeds (up to 10 Gbps download and 3 Gbps upload). FastConnect 6900 offers support for the current Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.2.

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 has 12 GB of LPDDR5 RAM, an amount that should be enough to keep a good number of applications in memory, although other flagships exceed this figure with 12 GB or even more of memory.

Next, we are going to see the results in various benchmarks, which will give us an idea of ​​the power of this terminal compared to other smartphones.

In the AnTuTu v9 benchmark, it has achieved a result of 968,161 points, a very high score, which surpasses all current flagships.

In the Geekbench 5 benchmark focused on processor performance, it has achieved 1,330/4,156 points in the mono/multi-core tests, which are very high results, beating other Android flagships.

In the PCMark 3.0 general performance test that measures performance when performing everyday tasks, it has obtained a score of 14,655 points, a high value above almost all Android smartphones.

In the storage section, the phone scores high in AndroBench tests for read and write speeds.

Next, we are going to see the results in various graphic tests to check the expected performance in games.

In the GFXBench test with traditional APIs, the phone has achieved results that are not particularly high considering its hardware.

In GFXBench tests based on modern low-level, high-efficiency APIs (Metal/OpenGL and Vulkan), the phone outperforms many Android smartphones.

In the 3DMark Wild Life Unlimited test, the phone has also achieved a spectacular result, above the iPhone 13 (it is not usual to see an Android smartphone competing equally against an iPhone in graphic performance).

To check the graphics performance on a daily basis, I have tested several demanding 3D games — Real Racing 3, Asphalt 9 and Call of Duty Mobile.

Using GameBench software, I have been able to measure various performance parameters on these games in actual play.

Do you know GameBench Pro? GameBench Pro is the industry’s leading tool for measuring game performance on Android and iOS smartphones. If you want to know more, you can visit their website.

Games get a stable rate around 60 FPS in Asphalt 9, Call of Duty and Real Racing 3.

These are good values, but below what we would expect in a smartphone with this hardware. Other high-end devices have exceeded 100 FPS in titles like Real Racing.

GamingFPS (average)FPSF Stability Min-Max %CPU / %GPU

Asphalt 9 58 90% 33-61 7% / 70%
Real Racing 3 60 100% 51-61 5% / 41%
Call of Duty 60 100% 56-61 9% / 39%

(*) Game quality settings:

Asphalt 9: Graphics quality set to “high”
Real Racing 3: Default graphics quality
Call of Duty Mobile: Graphics quality “very high” and frames per second set to “ultra”

In general, the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 has achieved very high results in the benchmarks, surpassing the rest of the high-end Android smartphones, since this phone has the best hardware of the moment. Benchmarks aside, on a day-to-day basis, I haven’t experienced any signs of lag when moving around the interface, opening apps, or switching between tasks.

In addition to punctual performance, it is important to know if the phone is capable of sustaining this performance over time or if it is reduced by the increase in processor temperature.

In the CPU Throttling test that measures the drop in CPU performance after 15 minutes of sustained load, the phone has obtained a simply correct result, since the performance after about 15 minutes drops to 71%.

The 3DMark Wild Life Stress Test measures the variation in graphics performance after 20 minutes of running the test.

The phone has also obtained a rather improvable result of 53% here too, which means that the graphics performance worsens after a long period of use.

In practice, it is rare that you will encounter performance issues after long use, as the chip’s power remains very high even when reduced.

After playing several games in a row, I have measured high temperatures on the back surface, of more than 36ºC, as well as on the screen. It is not an uncomfortable temperature at all.

I’ve had no issues with multitasking, as the 12GB of LPDDR5 RAM is more than capable of keeping multiple apps open in memory without them closing.

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 is marketed in three storage variants of 256GB, 512GB or 1TB. This storage is very fast since it is eUFS 3.1 type.

Unfortunately, the Galaxy Z Fold4 does not support the use of micro-SD cards, so you will not be able to expand the storage capacity. In any case, with these capabilities you should not have a problem.

The USB-C port is of type USB 3.2, so you will not have speed problems when transferring content between the phone and the computer.

This port is OTG compatible, so you can plug in a USB-C key and access it like external storage. Also supports DisplayPort over USB-C with an HDMI adapter up to [email protected]

In terms of connectivity, it is compatible with Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac at 2.4GHz and 5GHz, Wi-Fi 6 / 6E (802.11ax), Bluetooth 5.2 and NFC. The phone is compatible with the new WiFi 6E standard that makes use of the 6 GHz band, although very few smartphones and routers support this type of network.

It also supports Ultra Wide Band (UWB), so you can accurately locate lost items if you get the Smart Tag+.

Samsung includes a single SIM card slot but offers support for eSIM, so you can make use of Dual SIM functionality by combining nanoSIM + eSIM.

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 is compatible with 5G networks and supports both the band below 6 GHz (Sub-6) and the mmWave band.

 

The spectrum used for 5G is divided into two bands: below 6 GHz (Sub-6) and above 24 GHz (mmWave).

The main difference between the two is speed and coverage. The Sub-6 band provides better coverage, but top speeds are only 20 percent faster than 4G LTE, so it’s not that impressive.

The mmWave band offers a very high download speed (up to 10 Gbps) but the coverage is much worse, about 200 meters, so it may happen that your phone spends more time connected to 4G than to 5G, especially when you are inside a building.

This type of technology is designed for open spaces or areas with a high density of users where many antennas are installed. The lower coverage of mmWave is the reason why operators want to fill cities with 5G antennas, so that there is always one with which you have direct line of sight.

In Spain, the only band that is already in use for 5G is sub-6GHz, so having a smartphone with 5G mmWave connectivity is useless today — at least until that frequency band is auctioned at some point of the next few months.

In the United States, however, some operators have deployed these networks, and this is the reason why some smartphones offer access to 5G millimeter wave (mmWave) networks.

4G connectivity is Cat. 20/Cat. 18, so it can reach theoretical maximum speeds of 2 Gbps for download and 200 Mbps for upload.

In the tests that I have carried out, the network speed for both Wi-Fi and cellular have been satisfactory. The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 has reached 300 Mbps download and upload Wi-Fi with a 300 Mbps connection.

In the cellular connectivity test, I have measured speeds of around 76 Mbps download and 61 Mbps upload in an area with Movistar 5G connectivity.

In the “absences” section, it should be noted that it does not incorporate an FM radio, which some users will find as a limitation, nor an infrared emitter.

Biometrics

Samsung has not incorporated a fingerprint reader under any of the two screens of the Galaxy Z Fold4, but the fingerprint reader is located on the side, integrated into the power button

The recognition works quickly and reliably, and its position on the side is quite comfortable since it is at a good height for the thumb or index finger.

By default, the fingerprint reader is not in operation all the time, but we must first turn on the screen to activate it. However, it is possible to set it to be always on so that simply placing your finger will initiate recognition. The drawback is that, given its position, it is not uncommon for it to be pressed by mistake when carrying it in your hand and, after five failed attempts, it asks for the PIN.

Fingerprint recognition works quite quickly

Samsung has also added a facial recognition system that uses the front camera located on the outside or inside to capture a 2D image, so it is not as secure as 3D recognition. In any case, in my tests I have not been able to fool the system with a photograph of my face even in the fastest recognition mode that reduces security.

Samsung allows fingerprint and face recognition to be active at the same time, so we can use the one that suits us best at any time.

In my case, I have chosen to use fingerprint unlock when the phone is folded because the finger is in the right place when holding the phone in the hand. However, I have resorted to facial recognition when opening the Galaxy Z Fold4 since as soon as it is opened, recognition starts.

Drums

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 has two batteries, one in each half. Its combined capacity is 4,400 mAh, the same as in the previous model. This capacity may seem somewhat scarce to power such a large screen.

To check the autonomy, I have carried out the battery test of the well-known PCMark test: Work 3.0.

Given the importance of the screen in battery consumption, it is important to calibrate the screens with a colorimeter (or a similar instrument) at the same absolute level of brightness (it is not valid to set it to 50%) if you want to obtain comparable autonomy results. between devices.

Otherwise, the results may be greatly affected by the brightness level of each smartphone’s screen and are therefore not comparable. I mention this here because not all analyzes take this into account and in this test you sometimes see absurd values.

In the case of PCMark: Work 3.0, the test itself indicates that the test must be performed with the screen calibrated at 200 nits for the results to be comparable. This is how we carry out the autonomy tests on smartphones.

PCMark Work 3.0 tests the autonomy of the terminal when performing a mixture of daily and demanding tasks, since the test simulates browsing web pages, writing texts and inserting images, applying filters to photographs, editing videos and data manipulation.

Given the impact that the refresh rate has on the autonomy of smartphones, I have carried out this test four times: once with each screen and once with each refresh rate.

In the test with the internal screen configured at 60 Hz I have obtained a result of 10 hours and 20 minutes, while, with the adaptive frequency at 120 Hz, the autonomy is reduced to 8 hours and 22 minutes, which represents a drop of about 20 percent.

In the test with the external screen configured at 60 Hz I have obtained a result of 12 hours and 51 minutes, but, with the adaptive frequency at 120 Hz, the autonomy is reduced to 10 hours and 57 minutes, which represents a decrease of around of 15 percent.

These results reflect a significant improvement over the Galaxy Z Fold3. In practice, the battery of the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 can be somewhat scarce if you use its large internal screen for a long time, but more than good if you use the external screen. Since it is normal to use a combination of both, the result is halfway, so it has good autonomy.

In my tests, the autonomy of the Galaxy Z Fold4 has been enough to get to the end of the day as long as I did not make very intensive use of the internal screen watching videos or browsing the Internet, since its consumption is much higher than that of the internal screen. .

Fortunately, the outer screen is large and comfortable enough for many tasks — check a notification, send/receive a WhatsApp message, etc. — can be carried out comfortably without unfolding the smartphone, although the grace of having a foldable is lost.

If you want to extend the autonomy of your device, you will be happy to know that Samsung incorporates an energy saving mode. Power saving mode limits maximum CPU performance to 70%, reduces brightness by 10%, disables 5G and disables Always On Display,

In addition, there is an option that allows you to limit the apps and the Home screen. What this mode does is that it limits the number of apps we can use, limits all background activities, disables Edge content, and switches to a dark theme.

Samsung includes an option called Adaptive Battery, which limits battery usage by apps you don’t normally use.

Battery and power saving options

Samsung has also incorporated an option that allows you to sleep apps that have not been used for a while. These apps don’t run in the background, so they may not receive updates or send notifications. We can manually choose those apps that are never inactive, as well as those that must always be in inactive mode.

The Galaxy Z Fold4 offers fast cable charging at 25W. This charge is not especially fast when compared to other flagships (we have already seen fast charging at 200W), but in its favor, it uses the USB-PD standard, instead of the proprietary protocols of other manufacturers such as Xiaomi, OnePlus and OPPO, to name a few.

In my tests with a standard 65W USB-PD charger ( €29.99), the full charging process of the Galaxy Z Fold4 took a total of 1 hour and 4 minutes. As we can see in the graph, in 30 minutes the load has reached 40%.

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 charging process

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 supports wireless charging up to 15W if you use Samsung’s Fast Wireless Charger accessory (€45).

It is possible to disable fast wired and wireless charging, in case you want to preserve your battery life. There is also an option to limit the maximum load to 85%, which prolongs battery life in exchange for better autonomy.

Samsung has included the Wireless PowerShare functionality that allows you to use the Galaxy Z Fold4 as a wireless charging base to charge other smartphones, headphones or other devices that support this type of charging. The drawback of this charging is that it is quite slow (4.5 watts) and sometimes it is interrupted because the phones are misaligned.

Software

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 runs One UI 4.1.1 on Android 12L, the version of Google’s operating system designed for folding devices. Samsung has confirmed that its latest high-end smartphones will receive four years of major OS updates, which is great news.

Since this software layer is the same as the Galaxy S22 Ultra that we reviewed a few months ago, we invite you to read the Software section of our Galaxy S22 Ultra review to learn about its features.

As a particular aspect of the Galaxy Z Fold4, it has two screens and we can use either of them to manage the smartphone. Each can display different apps and widgets on the desktop, as well as different wallpapers on the home and lock screens of both screens.

In my daily life, I have chosen to use the external screen for quick actions such as checking a notification, seeing the latest WhatsApp messages, checking Twitter, making a phone call, etc. The drawback of this screen is that it is quite narrow, which makes certain content such as web pages or entering information using the keyboard difficult.

On the other hand, I have resorted to the folding inner screen when I wanted to surf the Internet, write an email, post on my social networks, take a picture or, of course, watch a video or play a game.

Due to the large size of the internal screen, by default the keyboard is shown divided into two halves, each one attached to an edge of the screen. It is also possible to configure the keyboard as a floating window on the screen or opt for the conventional keyboard that occupies the entire bottom strip of the screen.

Samsung offers a feature called App Continuity that allows you to switch from using an app on the outer screen to using it on the big screen just by opening the smartphone, without any interruption.

This works well with apps like Twitter, Instagram, Netflix, YouTube, Gallery and others. However, when browsing web pages, I encounter the problem that both the Samsung browser and Chrome can only be configured to display one of the two versions of the pages: mobile or desktop. I would like the mobile version to be seen on the outside screen but the desktop version to be seen on the big screen.

By default, if we are using an app on the folding screen and we close the Galaxy Z Fold4, the smartphone locks. However, we can configure certain apps to go to the front screen when closing the smartphone.

One of the novelties that the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 brings is a taskbar similar to that of a PC. In a way, it’s similar to the Edge panel we’ve been seeing on Samsung phones for a long time, but with the difference that it’s always visible when you’re using an app, making it easier to multitask.

The taskbar is divided into several sections:

  • A 3×3 grid icon that opens the list of apps installed on the phone
  • The list of icons of the favorite apps that we have chosen for the home screen
  • Two icons of the last two applications you have used.

To the right of the tube, you’ll find icons for the last two apps you’ve used. A quick tap will switch between them, and it’s a faster way to multitask between three full-screen apps than any previous method.

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 offers Multi Active Window that allows you to use up to three applications at the same time on its large unfolded screen.

We can have two open apps, one on the left and one on the right (we cannot split the screen horizontally) or three open apps, one on one side and two on the other (the latter stacked vertically or horizontally).

In my tests, I was able to have three apps open — Gallery, TikTok, and Twitter — playing videos at the same time, without any hitches in playback. Samsung has done a great job to offer real multitasking.

It is possible to drag content from one window to another quickly and easily. The list of supported content has been expanding and, among them, probably the most used are text fragments and images.

One UI multi-window interface on the Galaxy Z Fold4

Each app has an oval-shaped control bar near the top, which allows you to reposition the app or view new options, such as going full screen or making it a floating window. Not all apps allow to work in a floating window, but there is an experimental setting that forces those that, at first, resist.

It is possible to have up to 5 floating windows above the 3 open apps on the screen, which gives a total of 8 apps running at the same time. It is possible to modify the transparency of a floating window, as well as minimize it to a floating icon.

Multiple apps and open windows on the Galaxy Z Fold4

If you’re looking for the Galaxy Z Fold4 for productivity, you’ll be happy to know that it supports Samsung DeX, both wired and wireless to a monitor or TV, as well as on a Windows PC, with a dedicated software client.

Samsung also offers a Flex mode, which takes advantage of the intermediate state of folding between 75 and 115 degrees to divide the screen into two halves. The main content is displayed in the upper half, while certain controls are displayed in the lower half.

Some apps that support Flex mode are the video player or the Gallery app. In both, the navigation controls for images and video are shown at the bottom and the visual content at the top.

It can also be used in the Camera app, which is useful for taking selfies (with the internal camera, yes) while the phone is “sitting” on a table. Unfortunately, you can’t take advantage of Flex mode to take selfies with the main cameras (as you can in the Galaxy Z Flip4), since when we “seat” the phone, we would do it on the outer screen.

Flex mode to take a selfie

S Pen

Like its predecessor, the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 brings support for the S Pen, with two pen options:

  • S Pen Fold Edition ( €49.90): It has a length of 132 mm, a diameter of 7.7 mm and a weight of 6.7 grams. It doesn’t have Bluetooth, so it doesn’t support air gestures, and it’s exclusive to the Galaxy Z Fold.
  • S Pen Pro: It has a length of 173.6 mm, a diameter of 9.5 mm and a weight of 13.8 grams. It has Bluetooth and has a switch that allows you to switch between the conventional S Pen mode (compatible with Galaxy S21 Ultra, Note20 series, Note10 series, Galaxy Tab S7/S7+, Galaxy Book Pro 360) and Z Fold mode. It will be released later

Since the Galaxy Z Fold4 does not have a compartment for the S Pen, Samsung has created a case in which the S Pen Fold Edition can be inserted and stored. The S Pen pointer allows you to write and draw on the screen, as in the old Galaxy Note, which is very interesting given the large screen surface that the Galaxy Z Fold4 has.

This year, Samsung has added a new text extraction feature, which uses the S Pen to select information from an app (for example, an address within your contacts) and allows you to quickly drag it to Google Maps to get directions.

This feature uses AI to extract information from images and allows you to scan dates, times, addresses, phone numbers, email addresses, and URLs.

Multimedia

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 has two speakers that offer stereo sound. These speakers are located at the top and bottom of the left side, so if you want maximum stereo separation it is best to hold the phone so that the speakers are on the left and right.

The sound of the speakers of the Galaxy Z Fold4 is pleasant and powerful, with a good reproduction of medium and high tones. At maximum volume, the sound is heard without distortion.

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 is compatible with Dolby Atmos surround sound (includes Dolby Digital and Dolby Digital Plus), which you can enjoy with both headphones and the phone’s own speakers for a more immersive and three-dimensional sound experience.

Furthermore, the smartphone supports 32-bit UHQ audio, and also supports PCM up to 32-bit.

In addition, it has Bluetooth Dual Audio functionality that allows you to play music on two Bluetooth devices at the same time, which can be useful if you have more than one Bluetooth speaker or headphones. Now, the speakers don’t necessarily sound in perfect sync, so it’s best suited for situations where the speakers are separate — say, one in each room — or headphones are used.

Samsung has incorporated some interesting sound functions such as Adapt Sound to calibrate the sound emitted through the headphones to the frequency response of our ears. Samsung incorporates an equalizer and a function called UHQ Optimizer that improves the sound resolution of music and videos.

Another interesting option is standalone application sound, which allows you to play the sound of an application on another audio device. In this way we can make an app like Spotify play the sound through a Bluetooth speaker while the rest of the sounds continue to play on the phone.

Samsung does not include a 3.5mm headphone jack, as is common in high-end smartphones. This means that you will have to resort to Bluetooth or USB-C headphones, or use a USB-C to 3.5 mm adapter. that Samsung has not included in the box.

The Gallery application is used to view the photos and videos stored on the phone, as well as to edit the images using various built-in functionalities. The app has three tabs at the bottom: Pictures, Albums, and Stories.

One of the features that this app incorporates is the possibility of grouping similar photographs of the same object (up to 100 shots in the same day) in the gallery for greater cleaning. This way you won’t see as many duplicate photos if you’ve taken more than one photo of the same object.

Video playback is good thanks to its large screen, but its rather square screen ratio makes for fairly thick black bands above and below the image.

To check the compatibility with various audio and video formats, I have tried to play four files with Full HD resolution and 4K resolution, encoded with the H.264 format and with the most modern HEVC. All four reproduce perfectly with complete smoothness.

Of course, videos from streaming services like Netflix, HBO and Amazon Prime Video play without any problem. The device is Widevine L1 certified, so we can play HD videos from DRM-protected services like Netflix smoothly even in HDR quality.

Camera

In the photographic section, Samsung has included no less than five cameras in the Galaxy Z Fold4: 1 exterior front camera, 1 interior front camera and 3 rear cameras. Samsung has brought camera innovations from the Galaxy S series to the foldable form factor.

Starting with the rear cameras, we find the following configuration:

  • Wide-angle camera (85º) with 50MP (1.0μm) Samsung GN3 sensor with f/1.8 aperture lens, optical stabilization and Dual Pixel AF focus
  • Ultra wide angle camera (123º) with 12MP Sony IMX258 sensor (1.12μm) with f/2.2 aperture lens
  • 3x telephoto camera with 10MP (1.0μm) S5K3K1 sensor with f/2.4 aperture lens and optical stabilization

The wide-angle camera looks identical to the one on the Galaxy S22/S22+, but it’s actually not. The wide-angle camera is based on the Samsung GN3 sensor, while the S22/S22+ uses a Samsung GN5 sensor.

Although both sensors have the same size and resolution, the Samsung GN5 uses Dual Pixel Pro for focus, while the Samsung GN3 uses Dual Pixel, which is less sophisticated. In practice, this means that the Galaxy Z Fold4 has a little more difficulty focusing, as it detects vertical phase differences worse.

The ultra wide-angle camera is the same one found in the Galaxy Z Fold3, which is below that of the Galaxy S22+ with its larger sensor (1/2.55″) with 1.4µm pixels.

The telephoto camera is the same as the Galaxy S22/S22+, with a 3x optical zoom, which is an improvement over the 2x zoom of the Galaxy Z Fold3. It would not have been bad to find a camera with a higher magnification periscopic lens, but I am not going to complain either.

As for the exterior front camera, we find a wide-angle camera (24 mm) with a 10MP Sony IMX374 sensor (1/3″, 1.22μm) with an f/2.2 aperture lens and fixed focus. It’s the same as the Galaxy Fold2 and Fold3, so it’s been around for a while.

Finally, the interior front camera located under the screen is a wide-angle camera (26mm) with a 16MP (1/3″, 1.0µm) Sony IMX471 sensor with an f/1.8 aperture lens and fixed focus. Although the sensor used by this camera has a resolution of 16MP, the low light it captures means that Samsung has chosen to produce a 4MP (2.0μm) image.

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 has three cameras on the back

The triple rear camera of the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 offers great versatility as it allows you to take pictures with both a wide field of view (ultra wide angle) and with a zoom (telephoto) to get closer to the details.

Below, we can see the same scene captured by all three cameras and the difference in perspective is abysmal. 

ultra wide angle camera

Standard wide angle camera

telephoto camera

ultra wide angle camera

Standard wide angle camera

telephoto camera

The Camera app is not limited to taking photos, but it also suggests changing the frame in certain shots. However, if you are an experienced photographer, you will probably want to disable these tips as they are at odds with creativity.

Other times, the Camera app suggests that you use a particular camera. This happens, for example, when photographing large buildings, as a message appears suggesting to use the ultra wide angle camera.

If you are an expert user, you will be happy to know that Samsung includes a Pro mode that allows you to manually adjust parameters such as ISO sensitivity, focus point, white balance, exposure time and more. We can also save images in JPEG and RAW format for later editing.

Wide angle main rear camera

Samsung has opted for a 50MP sensor, whose resolution has grown compared to its predecessor, although it is still below what we see in other smartphones that use 64 or even 108 MP sensors. This sensor makes use of pixel binning functionality to combine multiple pixels into one and reduce noise.

It is possible to take 50MP shots for greater sharpness, as well as activate a Size Optimizer function that adds even more sharpness thanks to the capture and combination of several images, at the cost of taking a little more time.

Below, we can see the comparison between a photo taken at the normal resolution of 12MP, at the resolution of 50MP and at the resolution of 50MP with Detail Optimizer. As can be seen, the third image offers a much higher sharpness than the second, which in turn also improves the first. 

12MP

50MP (normal)

50MP (detail optimizer)

12MP

50MP (normal)

50MP (detail optimizer)

Below are some photos taken with this camera, which does a great job of preserving detail, maintaining good color and delivering high dynamic range in good light.

Pictures taken with the wide-angle camera during the day

In low light conditions, the phone holds up well, as we can see in these examples, with images that are fairly free of noise and colors that do not look washed out.

Pictures taken with the wide-angle camera at night

If you wonder how the main camera of the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 compares with other flagships, here you can see a comparison at night, which is where the difference between the photographic quality of smartphones is most noticeable.

The phone comes off pretty well, offering image quality similar to the Galaxy S22 Ultra and on par with many flagships.

Comparison of the camera of the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 with other flagships

Ultra wide angle rear camera

The ultra wide-angle camera allows you to take very spectacular photos that allow you to capture many more elements than would normally fit in a photo.

In terms of image quality, a greater dynamic range or better HDR processing is missing, since, in scenes with very bright areas, they look burned, as can be seen in some of the following examples.

This camera does not have optical stabilization and its aperture is somewhat limited, so it is not suitable for taking pictures in low light situations, since noise makes an appearance and details are lost.

Here are some examples of photos taken with this camera during the day, which offer good image quality with sharp shots, wide dynamic range, and vivid color.

Pictures taken with the ultra wide angle lens during the day

When the light is scarce, the limitations of this camera take their toll, as we can see in these examples.

The captures are not as clear and the flashes of intense lights are a problem in some shots, even producing effects as strange as the one we can see in the photograph of the illuminated pool. In general, it is not one of the best ultra wide-angle cameras that we can find in the high range.

Pictures taken with the ultra wide angle lens at night

telephoto rear camera

The telephoto camera allows you to take pictures with 3X optical zoom, which allows you to get closer to distant objects without losing quality. This can be very useful for those occasions when we want to focus attention on a particular element.

One drawback is that the telephoto camera is less bright and, in low light, the image quality decreases.

Here are some examples of photos taken with the telephoto lens in bright light, which offer great image quality.

Pictures taken with the telephoto lens during the day

In very low light situations, even if we choose the telephoto camera, the picture is actually taken with the main camera and then cropped. This is because the main camera is brighter, so it pays to crop the picture for zoom rather than take it with the telephoto camera.

Next, we can see an example in which the photograph taken with the telephoto camera has actually been taken with the main camera, as can be verified if we access the EXIF ​​data of the image and see the aperture of the camera (f/1.8 , which corresponds to the main camera).

In fact, in my tests at night, I have only managed to get a few photos captured with the telephoto camera. They are, obviously, those in which there was a greater amount of light.

Pictures taken with the telephoto lens at night

Portrait mode

Samsung doesn’t need a depth camera to take good software-processed bokeh portraits.

The ideal lens for taking a portrait is one with a focal length of about 50mm, which is equivalent to a 2x telephoto lens, so to take portraits with the 3x telephoto lens you need to move a few meters away from the subject.

It’s also possible to take a Portrait mode shot with the wide-angle camera, but it’s not ideal if you want to take a head-and-shoulders portrait, as you have to get really close and the face is distorted.

Below, we can see some examples of photography taken in Portrait mode. The Galaxy Z Fold4 does an excellent job of separating the person from the background of the image, with only a few minor glitches in the hair area.

Video recording

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 is capable of recording video up to 8K (7680×4320) resolution at 24fps or 4K (3840×2160) at 30/60fps.

HDR10+ recording and Tracking AF function (keeping the camera focused on the selected subject even if it moves) are not available at [email protected] resolution HDR10+ recording is also not available at [email protected]

We also find a recording mode called Professional Video that offers manual controls to choose the ISO level, shutter speed, focus point, color temperature and exposure.

Below, we can see some examples of videos recorded in [email protected] and [email protected] resolution during the day and at night. Overall, image quality and stabilization are very good.

When recording video, it offers a Super Stabilization mode that is only available in Full HD resolution at 30/60 fps and that always uses the ultra wide-angle camera. This mode produces a very stable image, although due to the characteristics of the ultra wide angle camera it is only useful in good lighting conditions.

In order to reduce the space occupied by the videos, Samsung allows to use the high efficiency HEVC (H.265) format which reduces the space occupied by the video, but you may have compatibility issues when playing it on another device.

Another interesting functionality is that it allows you to record Portrait Video, that is, record video with the background out of focus, as if we were applying Portrait mode to the video.

Samsung has included the so-called One Shot where you just point your phone at a subject, press the shutter and wait a few seconds. The camera will capture a short movie, some GIFs, and some photos with all cameras. It then presents them all in a collage where you can choose your favorites. In my opinion, it’s more of a curiosity than something really useful.

outside front camera

As I mentioned before, the best quality selfies are taken with the rear camera when using the front screen as a preview of the capture.

However, on some occasions, for speed and convenience, you may prefer to use the external front camera. This camera offers two shooting modes: normal and wide angle. The second mode is useful if you want to take a selfie in which two people appear, since the field of vision is greater.

Taking advantage of the fact that the phone can be folded, it is possible to put it on the table at a right angle and walk away to capture a timer photo where your arm is not visible.

Below, we can see some selfies captured with the Galaxy Z Fold4’s exterior front camera, which offer good image quality without excessively overexposing the background even in high contrast situations.

Selfies taken with the exterior front camera of the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4

The depth camera allows you to take selfies with the Live Focus effect that blurs the background of the image. Below, we can see some examples with the background out of focus.

Selfies taken with the front camera in live focus mode

Another interesting aspect is that the front camera is capable of recording videos in UHD format (3,840 × 2,160) at 60 fps, something that those who are used to video recording will appreciate.

Inside front camera

The interior front camera of the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 has less utility than you might think, since you will probably only use it for video calls with the phone unfolded. To take selfies, it is more convenient to use the outer front camera or the rear cameras as explained.

Since the camera is located under the screen, the amount of light that reaches it is less than a standard camera. On the other hand, its resolution, 4 MP, is lower than what we usually find in smartphone cameras.

As a result, we are faced with a camera that offers a much better image quality. To make it easier to compare the quality of both selfie cameras, below is a selfie taken with the outer selfie camera and one taken with the inner selfie camera.

outside front camera

Inside front camera

Finally, the presence of an external screen makes it easier to capture selfies with the rear cameras since, in the unfolded state, the cameras are on the left and the front screen on the right shows the image to be captured.

Since the main wide-angle camera has better quality than either of the two front cameras, this is the best way to take a high-quality selfie.

voice calls

In the tests that I have carried out, the quality of the voice is correct and we have been able to hold conversations perfectly in environments with some noise without difficulties.

Samsung’s Contacts app and the Phone app do their job well. If we open the details of a contact, all the possible ways to contact him are displayed, even through third-party applications such as WhatsApp.

An interesting feature is that you can quickly make a call by dragging your finger from left to right on a contact’s name. If you drag him in the opposite direction you send him a text message.

Precio

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 is on sale at an official price of €1,799 (256GB/12GB RAM), €1,919 (512GB/12GB RAM) and €2,159 (1TB/12GB RAM), although you can find it at a lower price at online stores like Amazon.

Although it is not a smartphone for all pockets, its price has been slightly reduced compared to previous generations.

If you are looking for a folding smartphone, a more compact alternative that seems to be having quite a lot of sales success is the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip4 ( €1,099).

The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip4 has a 6.7″ folding inner screen with Full HD+ resolution, a 1.9″ outer screen, Snapdragon 8+ Gen1 processor, 8 GB of LPDDR5 RAM, 128/256/512 GB of UFS 3.1 storage , wide-angle rear camera (12MP, f/1.8) + ultra wide-angle (12MP, f/2.2), wide-angle inner camera (10MP, f/2.4) and 3,700 mAh battery with 25W fast charge and 10W wireless charge .

With a book form factor, the options are scarce, since the folding smartphones from Xiaomi, OPPO or Vivo, to name a few examples, are not for sale in Spain.

Recently, Huawei has indeed brought the HUAWEI Mate Xs 2 to Spain for €1,999, a very high price. This new device maintains the folding design with an opening towards the characteristic of Huawei and stands out for being light, thin and flat. However, it does not incorporate Google services.

Conclusions

Samsung was ahead of everyone by launching the first folding smartphone on the market and, year after year, the company refines the design and improves the software experience.

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 is a strong phone with a weight of 263 grams and an unequal thickness that goes from 14.2 (open area) to 15.8 mm. (hinge area) when closed, since the sides are not completely parallel but wedge-shaped. It is rare that other manufacturers like Vivo have managed to have both sides parallel, but Samsung has not yet.

In addition to a strong construction in aluminum and Gorilla Glas Victus+ glass, the phone maintains IPX8 water resistance, which is a distinguishing point of Samsung foldables compared to the competition.

The Galaxy Z Fold4 has a 6.2″ screen on the outside, which now has a less elongated ratio (23.1:9), which makes it easier to use the keyboard and, in general, makes it more comfortable to handle apps .

This screen is very suitable for performing quick tasks that do not require a very large screen, such as sending WhatsApp messages, making calls or checking notifications.

When we open the Galaxy Z Fold4, its large 7.6″ internal screen unfolds.

The inner screen now has a less square aspect (10.8: 9) and occupies the entire surface, since Samsung has hidden the camera under the screen, as in the previous model.

The camera under the screen has been improved with a new arrangement of pixels on the camera lens that makes it more invisible. On a day-to-day basis, it goes quite unnoticed, although, if you look closely, it is there.

The screen has a vertical crease in the central area that, curiously, is invisible if you look at the screen directly from the front but is perfectly noticeable if you look at it from an angle — that is, your friends see it more than you do. This crease is also noticeable to the touch when you drag your finger on the screen, although being in the center, it is not usual for you to pass your finger there.

The foldable screen is a Dynamic AMOLED 2X Display panel with a pixel density of 373 ppi, so it’s sharp. It is a panel with an adaptive refresh rate up to 120 Hz, a wide color gamut compatible with HDR10 + and excellent color fidelity.

In the Natural color mode, color fidelity is excellent, while the Vivid mode produces oversaturated colors (more unreal, but more striking). The screen offers pure blacks, so the contrast is practically infinite. The maximum brightness of the internal screen is very high, reaching 901 nits according to my tests (Samsung speaks of 1,000 nits), although some high-end smartphones are even brighter

Samsung embeds a fingerprint reader on the power button in a position that is quite comfortable to reach when the phone is closed. We can also opt for a facial recognition system that, in general, works very well. This is the system that I use when opening the phone since, while it is opened, the recognition takes place.

The performance of the Galaxy Z Fold4 is excellent as expected given that it incorporates the powerful Snapdragon 8+ Gen1 processor accompanied by 12 GB of RAM, more than any mobile device needs.

Both in benchmarks and in my experience of use, the Galaxy Z Fold4 offers very high performance. Not only apps run smoothly, but demanding 3D games like Asphalt 9, Dead Effect 2, PUBG or Fortnite run at full speed in maximum quality mode.

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 arrives with 256 GB, 512 GB or 1 TB of eUFS 3.1 storage, the fastest we can find today. It’s not expandable via micro-SD but, with this capacity, it doesn’t seem likely that you’ll need more space.

Regarding connectivity, the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 supports WiFi 6/6E, Bluetooth 5.2, USB Type-C, Ultrawideband (UWB) and NFC. However, it lacks FM radio or infrared emitter.

How could it be otherwise, it is compatible with 5G connections and has a dual card slot for Dual SIM. It is also compatible with eSIM.

Samsung has provided the Galaxy Z Fold4 with two batteries that add up to a capacity of 4,400 mAh, an amount that does not seem too large for such a large screen, although it is true that you will often use the external screen.

In my tests, the Galaxy Z Fold4 has obtained good autonomy results, with a significant improvement over the previous generation that is noticeable on a day-to-day basis.

In the end, the autonomy depends a lot on the use you make of the external screen (instead of the internal one) and if you activate the adaptive refresh rate at 120 Hz. In any case, in practice, you will have no problem reaching the end of the day if you make a combined use of both screens.

Samsung has incorporated fast wired charging up to 25W and wireless fast charging up to 15W. It’s not the fastest charging on the market, but lately Samsung is letting them fight for the throne of charging speeds — probably so as not to hurt battery life. The entire charging process via cable, according to my tests, takes 1 hour and 4 minutes.

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 features stereo speakers, located on the left and right when the smartphone is unfolded, and offers Dolby Atmos surround sound for a more immersive 3D audio experience. These speakers emit sound with great power and good quality. In the absences section we must mention the 3.5mm headphone jack, which is not present.

Samsung offers support for S Pen, so we can draw and write with the S Pen pointer on the screen. Although the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 does not have a hole to store the S Pen, Samsung has released a case that does have a space to store it.

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 arrives with Android 12L, specially designed for folding, and, on top of that, the Samsung One UI 4.1 customization layer. According to the latest Samsung policies, this terminal can be expected to receive major Android updates for four years (at least until Android 16).

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 has a large number of software features on top of Android such as gesture control, power saving modes, secure folder, dual messaging, Game Tools, Edge panels, Samsung Pass, Samsung Pay, Quick Share or Share Music.

Samsung has added some features specially designed for the large folding screen such as Application Continuity, which allows you to open an app on the secondary screen and continue using it on the large folding screen when you open the smartphone, Multi-Active Window, which allows you to display up to 3 apps + 5 floating windows on the screen at the same time, all of them running simultaneously, o Taskbar, which offers quick access to other apps for better multitasking.

Samsung has incorporated three cameras on the back of the Galaxy Z Fold4 that offer great versatility as they allow you to take shots with ultra wide angle (12MP f / 2.2), wide angle (50MP f / 1.8) and 3x telephoto (10MP f / 2.4).

Samsung has improved the cameras so that they compete equally with other flagships, although I would say that they are still a rung below those of the Galaxy S22 Ultra.

In general, the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4’s wide-angle camera performance is very good, both in good light and at night, and, in my comparison with other flagships, it has little to envy other phones.

The ultra-wide camera is a bit below what we see in other flagships, and the telephoto camera takes good shots in the day, but rarely shoots at night, since the phone usually leaves that task to the camera. wide angle and make a crop.

The exterior front camera of the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 has a 10MP sensor and f / 2.2 aperture, and allows you to take individual selfies or group selfies with a wider viewing angle. The interior front camera has a 4MP sensor and f/1.8 aperture, but since it is located below the screen, the image quality can clearly be improved, so you should avoid using it.

Also, thanks to the outer screen, it is possible to take selfies with the wide-angle rear camera, so using the outer or inner front camera is unnecessary in most cases, since the quality you get with the rear cameras is very poor. higher.

The rear camera is capable of recording video in 8K resolution at 24 fps. In addition, the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 allows you to record HDR10 + video to [email protected] with greater contrast and color. In the videos I have recorded, the image quality and stabilization have been excellent in all modes.

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 is on sale at an official price of €1,799 (256GB/12GB RAM), €1,919 (512GB/12GB RAM) and €2,159 (1TB/12GB RAM), although you can find it at a lower price at online stores like Amazon.

In conclusion, if you are looking for a smartphone with a huge screen and luxurious performance, the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 is a highly recommended option. Its main handicap is, apart from the price, its ergonomics, since it is quite a bulky device when it is closed.

The best:

  • Design with a folding form factor that allows you to enjoy a large screen in a pocket device.
  • 7.6″ folding interior screen with Dynamic AMOLED 2X panel compatible with HDR10+, Always On Display and 120 Hz refresh rate. It offers excellent sharpness, contrast, color fidelity and viewing angles.
  • 6.2″ exterior screen with Dynamic AMOLED 2X panel compatible with HDR10+, Always On Display and 120 Hz refresh rate. Its new, less elongated appearance is useful for using the smartphone without having to open it.
  • Speed ​​in handling the phone thanks to a powerful Snapdragon 8+ Gen1 processor and 12 GB of RAM. Very fast 256GB/512GB/1TB storage (eUFS 3.1).
  • Very versatile main camera (wide angle, ultra wide angle and 3X telephoto) with good performance. Video recording [email protected] and [email protected]/60fps.
  • Possibility of taking selfies with the main camera thanks to the external screen.
  • Samsung One UI interface with interesting improvements over Android such as Game Tools, Secure Folder, Dual Messaging, Energy Saving modes, Samsung Pass, Samsung Pay, gesture control, etc.
  • Features for foldable screens such as App Continuity (move an app from the secondary screen to the foldable screen), Multi Active Window (several apps running on the screen at the same time) and Taskbar (quick access to other apps from any app).
  • Fingerprint reader on the power button that recognizes and unlocks the phone comfortably. Practical facial recognition to use.
  • Support for writing on the screen using S Pen.
  • WiFi 6/6E, Bluetooth 5.2, NFC and 5G connectivity. Dual SIM support.
  • Stereo speakers that offer excellent sound quality. Dolby Atmos support and sending sound to two devices at the same time (Dual Bluetooth).
  • IPX8 resistance to water (but not to dust)

Worst:

  • High thickness when folded (14.2-15.8 mm.) and weight above other smartphones (263 gr.). The “wedge” shape when closing the phone is still present.
  • Screens with somewhat unusual ratios and, in the case of the interior, with a crease that is noticeable when you pass your finger or see the screen from the side.
  • Fast charging not too fast by today’s standards.
  • Price within reach of few pockets
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Abraham
Expert tech and gaming writer, blending computer science expertise