Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4: 5 features we want to see
The Galaxy Z Flip 3 is one of the best foldable phones for a reason. Along with being small enough to fit in a pocket, his version provided some much-needed improvements over its predecessor, such as an appropriate water resistance rating. But foldable phones are still in their infancy and can still be improved.
With hopes that Samsung will launch a fourth-generation flip phone later in 2022 – especially given how well the Flip 3 has sold – we’re hoping for more than just a spec upgrade. We would like to see a design evolution that includes some hardware upgrades.
Say goodbye to creases
People seeing or using the Z Flip 3 for the first time usually have one constant concern amidst all the positivity and excitement: the horizontal crease in the center of the screen. As I recall, everyone I know who has seen the phone in person has asked me if the crease was a problem.
Act like a fold is ideal is no better than acting as a display notch that isn’t boring to watch all the time.
Although my first answer is no, the crease really isn’t a big deal – and it isn’t, your eyes adjust – acting like a crease is ideal is no better than acting as a display notch that isn’t boring to watch all the time.
We know it’s totally possible to ship a foldable without a crease, because phones like the Moto RAZR 5G have already proven it’s possible. Even larger foldable phones, like the OPPO Find N, have also started shipping with no noticeable crease when folded, so it’s time for Samsung to do a little display hinge redesign and get on board.
Compared to the Z Fold 3’s vertical crease, the Z Flip 3’s crease annoys me more because it extends lengthwise across a much smaller screen. You’ll likely use it throughout the day because it’s easily within reach. That’s why, for me, this is the first thing in a proper redesign of the Z Flip 4.
Larger exterior screen
While we’re at it, I’d love to see Samsung borrow one more thing from the Moto RAZR 5G: that larger exterior display. While the Z Flip 3 has increased in screen size compared to its predecessor, which makes it actually useful for quick tasks like notifications, setting alarms, etc., having a full-size 4:3 display at the front would be much more practical.
Sometimes it’s just nice to have a quick tap on the small screen to get the job done.
One of the best design traits of this RAZR 5G is that exterior screen, simply because you can actually whatever you want on it. Unlike Samsung’s smaller Flip 3 display, which only shows very specific information, the Moto RAZR 5G’s exterior display is just a normal display, complete with a home screen.
The downside of having a larger outer screen, of course, is that it increases the likelihood of possible damage if dropped. This would make it all the more important to wrap a case around the phone. But I’m okay with the risk given the amount of productivity it would add to the device.
Opening a phone is great fun, but sometimes a quick tap on the small screen gets the job done. I learned that from the Z Flip 3, and the same would apply here.
This one’s a big ask, given that the new, larger camera sensors take up more space in a small, foldable phone body, but it’s still one I’d like to see happen. As much as I hate camera bumps, most high-end phones use the extra space to add bigger and better camera sensors. If that’s what it takes to get better cameras on the Z Flip 4, so be it.
At the very least, the addition of some sort of telephoto lens is an absolute must for the 2022 release.
Now, the Z Flip 3’s cameras are by no means bad. Samsung has completely overhauled its AI-based scene detection algorithm with its 2021 phone releases and, with that, significantly better photos.
This is especially true when it comes to motion, as Samsung’s camera software now acts more like Google’s. It takes pictures all the time, before and after pressing the shutter button. The back-end processing algorithm will then analyze all of these photos, choosing the ones with the least amount of blur, and then combining them all together to make one super stunning photo.
Now that we finally have a better treatment on Samsung’s camera software, it’s time to see a big hardware upgrade to the camera hardware on the Z Flip 4. At the very least, the adding some sort of telephoto lens is an absolute must for the 2022 release.
This does not refer to processing power or amount of RAM. These components are both good on the Z Flip 3, and there’s no reason to think Samsung is going to change the high-end spec lens for the Z Flip 4.
No, what we want here is a bigger battery and faster loading. Much like the camera hardware request, this one is probably a tough request given that extra room needs to be made inside the phone for all the foldable components and the hinge.
Still, the Z Flip 3’s battery life certainly isn’t epic and, for some people, might not even get them through a full day of use.
But Samsung can do a few things to help improve poor battery life without increasing the battery size of the Z Flip 4.
We want a bigger battery and faster loading.
Adding a larger exterior screen – as we so politely requested in the section above – would ensure users open the phone less during the day to use that larger foldable screen. A smaller screen doesn’t consume as much power as a larger one, which reduces battery drain throughout the day.
Second, Samsung really needs to increase the charging speed of the Z Flip 4. The Flip 3 only charges at 15W wired and only 10W wireless. These speeds were fast 5-6 years ago; today is damn slow. If we have to live with short battery life, being able to plug in the Z Flip 4 and quickly charge to 30-50% in just a few minutes would make up for it.
All-in on style
A few months after the launch of the Z Flip 3, Samsung announced the Z Flip 3 Bespoke Edition, a special edition of the Z Flip 3 that you can customize and order directly from Samsung. People could choose from 49 color combinations to make their Z Flip 3 look exactly how they wanted.
What I would like to see is a return to the Moto Maker.
But the bespoke edition still has a fairly limited scope. There are really only a handful of colors to choose from – the number 49 comes from mixing and matching colors instead of a huge array of possibilities – and there are no different materials among which ones to choose.
What I’d like to see is a throwback to the days of Moto Maker, where you could completely customize your phone right down to the engraving on that back. This included wood and leather back options, all sorts of colors for the metal rails around the phone, and more.
As it stands, buying the Bespoke Edition isn’t such a good idea at $1,000 because, frankly, there aren’t enough customization options.
Rule out the possibilities
The Flip 3 was marketed to an audience that was looking for something hip and new. The ads were whimsical, the cases were wild and unique, and the phone managed to fuse the feeling of nostalgia with the feeling of something new and exciting in a way phones haven’t in years. I hope Samsung takes more advantage of this with the Z Flip 4 and puts a lot of style and color into it.