Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 Review

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 goals to offer you a pocketable 7.6-inch pill and a 6.2-inch Candybar cellphone in the identical system. For the reason that reveal of the primary Galaxy Fold, Samsung’s total Z Fold design has been vindicated as the only survivor of the primary folding cellphone warfare.(picture above: Galaxy S21 in purple, subsequent to the Galaxy Z Fold3)

Since then, a gradual stream of enhancements and a cheaper price level have accelerated adoption. Must you be part of the Z Fold military? We’ll provide the info it’s essential resolve.

This take a look at unit is an AT&T mannequin and helps AT&T 5G options like mmWave for optimum theoretical efficiency. Different carriers could not help this, so verify their accessible community to have a good suggestion about what 5G efficiency to count on.

Additionally. particular AT&T software program and companies corresponding to Cell Safety, AT&T Cloud storage, and Sensible Wi-Fi (amongst others) that don’t all the time have equal elsewhere. Apart from that, the general consumer expertise ought to be much like different Z Fold3 handsets.

Galaxy Z Fold3 Design

samsung galaxy z fold3 review 06The highest and backside sections are each barely thinner than the S21 chassissamsung galaxy z fold3 review 07The again cowl doesn’t catch fingerprint a lot and is straightforward to maintain clearsamsung galaxy z fold3 review 18

One of the essential design enhancements is the cellphone’s sturdiness. The unique Z Fold we now have within the workplace nonetheless runs completely with out indicators of wear and tear, however the brand new Z Fold3 will get an IPx8 ranking (what’s an IP ranking?) which signifies that it will possibly survive water submersion for a short while.

The ‘x’ in IPx8 means it’s not licensed towards high quality mud particles, however proper now, that is the perfect you will get with foldable show technology. Water safety dramatically will increase the survival possibilities in the actual world as water is the #1 cellphone killer.


The duvet show and outer glass cowl are manufactured from Corning Gorilla Victus and are extra resistant than final yr’s mannequin.

samsung galaxy z fold3 review 20Extra pictures on Instagram

In my view, the chassis is sturdy, and bearing in mind each sturdiness side (together with the up to date hinge), Samsung’s declare that the cellphone is “80% stronger” is credible. That stated, there are some things you are able to do to make sure most lifespan.

First, the first show’s floor is extra tender, and if you happen to take away the additional plastic layer of safety, you may scratch it along with your fingernails – so maintain that layer on.


That show additionally helps a particular pen referred to as Z Fold3 S Pen, which comes with a spring-loaded tip to be as mild as doable with the plastic floor, so don’t attempt to use another pen.

The Galaxy Z Fold3 speaker system is sensational. It produces a sound that’s unbelievably highly effective for such a compact system. The sound is obvious and higher than many laptops. It has a greater physique and volumetric qualities than many laptops can output, which is true in each Portrait and Panorama modes.

Galaxy Z Fold3 Show

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Sturdiness apart, the efficiency of the shows can be wonderful. The first show decision is similar 2208×1768 decision as earlier than however now has a variable refresh price of 120 Hz (max). Because of this, you get all of the super-smooth scrolling and interplay of 120 Hz with out incurring a lot battery penalty.

The close to 100% sRGB protection ensures that colours are precisely rendered, and whereas non-flexible Samsung AMOLED shows may need higher color-rendering, it’s just about past human notion. On the identical time, the height brightness of 1200 NITs (auto-mode) ensures the show stays usable in all circumstances.

The first show’s camera options an under-the-screen selfie camera that’s very low-key when not in use. It really works by lowering the show’s pixel density at that location and turning off the pixels in entrance of the lens when taking a photograph.

samsung galaxy z fold3 review 09Folding show Selfie camera disabled/hidden (left) and energetic (proper)

The folding show’s crease is among the most ceaselessly requested questions, so let’s deal with it. It feels largely the identical to me because the Z Fold2: it’s often not seen when trying straight besides if it catches close by mild sources. it from the aspect will make the crease very apparent.

samsung galaxy z fold3 review 11Throughout regular utilization and if the atmosphere isn’t too vibrant, the crease is just not galaxy z fold3 review 13The crease is most seen if it catches close by reflections

Whereas it’s not an enormous visible subject, you’ll really feel it whereas utilizing the contact display screen. In my expertise, only a few folks complain about this, though it is best to strive in a retailer and resolve for your self. To me, it’s a non-factor.

When utilizing a Pen, the crease may be a extra acute drawback, however there are methods to cope with it, corresponding to rotating the cellphone 90-degree to keep away from the crease when writing from left to proper.

The 6.2-inch cowl show can be an AMOLED 120HZ show. It has excellent coloration and brightness as effectively.

samsung galaxy z fold3 review 16

Galaxy Z Fold3 Person Expertise

Know-how apart, the consumer expertise (UX) is “The” essential component for this cellphone, so how is it? For those who’ve learn my earlier Galaxy Fold and Z Fold2 reviews you may need an excellent sense of what to anticipate.

Closed Cellphone: getting near a typical dimension, however not fairly

samsung galaxy z fold3 review 15

When closed, the cellphone is 100% useful through the exterior cowl display screen. It’s a 6.2-inch show and has an impact of two.1” (54mm), making it noticeably narrower than the S21.

One-hand typing is a bit simpler, and you may entry the entire backside half of the display screen along with your thumb. Samsung’s OneUI interface is optimized exactly for that. I additionally discover it intelligent that the quilt display screen and first screens can have completely different app shortcuts.

Unfolded: an unbeatable multimedia expertise

samsung galaxy z fold3 review 12The Z Fold3 subsequent to the S21 Extremely, one of many largest ‘basic’ show

The actual essence of the Z Fold3 is its UX on the first 7.6” foldable OLED show. It’s nonetheless fairly unbelievable to have such a show in a single’s pocket, and that’s the first cause folks purchase it in ever extra important numbers.

The display screen dimension benefit is big and fairly evident, and any software that closely leans on visuals will profit. Samsung now lets customers “power” apps to maximise their content material, so Instagram and different unoptimized apps take full benefit of the large show.

Having a bigger display screen additionally vastly improves any mapping software, together with in your automotive. An iPad mini mount or one of many Z Fold3 mounts ought to do the trick.

The Z Fold3 might be a improbable transportable gaming system, however the expertise can be even higher if you happen to connected it to a controller.

Different apps corresponding to Fb and maybe Amazon purchasing don’t profit as a lot (but) however are nonetheless extra agreeable with the large display screen.

samsung galaxy z fold3 review 14

Utilizing YouTube is improbable, both in portrait or panorama mode. Relying on the orientation, you may have higher searching or a bigger picture. For instance, I like watching and searching information clips in portrait mode however favor films in Panorama mode.

For those who “zoom” into the video to cut back the Letterbox impact, Samsung will mechanically swap to a full-screen mode during which plenty of content material on the left+proper is clipped. I’d counsel including at the least yet another intermediate dimension to search out the perfect stability

The Flex mode (display screen partly open) may be advantageous because the chassis turns into a stand for video conferencing, watching films, or capturing time-lapses.

samsung galaxy z fold3 review 10The Z Fold3 might be an awesome sidekick to your laptop, particularly for phone-only chat apps

From a productiveness standpoint, I discover the Z Fold3 to be an awesome system to maintain round for checking and replying to emails. For max productiveness, join it to a BT keyboard and have it relaxation on a stand, ideally in panorama mode.Once I journey, I take advantage of a foldable 1mm thick stand.

In case your computing actions are very mild (writing/PPT/Internet), Samsung’s DEX would possibly even offer you an opportunity to switch your laptop with the Z Fold 3. It’s one thing you may as well do with different Samsung telephones, however if you happen to haven’t heard about it, verify the video under and extra use circumstances movies:

Lastly, if you happen to usually swap between a number of apps, you may arrange a Break up-screen between two or three apps. I favor utilizing the “Edge panels” for app-switching. It’s a taskbar to the proper of the display screen that you just conveniently swipe out and in.

Galaxy Z Fold3 Pen

I’ve not examined the optionally available pen (49.99 to 99.99 for the “professional”) or the related case, however after performing some analysis, right here’s my opinion:

Having an exterior pen is just not as cool because the Galaxy Word pen, and we are able to solely hope that Samsung will combine the pen into the chassis when technology permits. The “Flip Cowl with Pen” case for the Z Fold3 is fairly costly, cumbersome, and doesn’t appear to work all that nice when open. I’m not too keen on it.

For customers who gained’t have a Pen, the Zagg Gear4 Bridgetown case presents good safety for all glass surfaces and the camera lenses. It is available in two items and integrates effectively with the Z Fold design. Like most Z Fold3 circumstances, it makes use of a little bit of tape to be securely connected to the glass floor. It prices $59.99.

zagg gear4 bridgetown z fold3 03

The crease on the heart would possibly annoy pen customers, however it ought to be okay for doodling and light-weight sketching. If it’s essential draw one thing super-accurate, it could get irritating. In the long run, the flatter the floor and the higher the expertise is.

Writing in Panorama mode would possibly show you how to keep away from hitting the crease altogether since you may write above and under it. You could possibly additionally all the time write on the underside half of the display screen and scroll the web page up and down.

Galaxy Z Fold3 Digital camera

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solely high-level specs, the Z Fold3 and Z Flip3 appear to have related “12MP” Vast and Ultrawide camera modules. Nevertheless, a more in-depth have a look at the technicals reveals us that the Z Fold3 has barely higher {hardware} than the Z Flip3.


The main Galaxy Z Fold3 camera has a 30% bigger sensor pixel dimension than the Z Flip3, and we are able to see it in low-light pictures. The standard variations develop into extra evident in more difficult conditions the place you may simply spot variations in high quality (noise, particulars, blur) whenever you problem the {hardware}.

General, the Z Fold3’s camera is kind of good, and our CAMERA HW ({hardware}) benchmark reveals it’s akin to the Galaxy S21 camera system, which is superb. Some folks complain that “for the worth,” they count on the S21 Extremely’s camera efficiency, however it’s simply an unrealistic technical expectation for this type issue.

The Ultrawide camera of the Z Fold3 makes use of the identical sensor because the Z Flip3 (Sony IMX258) however options barely higher optics. Each telephones ought to run very related camera software program and tuning to be able to count on colours hues and realism ranges to be very comparable.

The Z Fold3 has two selfie cameras on the quilt show and one other “hidden” within the foldable show. The cover-screen selfie camera is technically the higher one, and if you wish to take an informal selfie, it is best to both use that one or use the Main camera with a mirror view on the covert display screen.

samsung galaxy z fold3 review 21With the mirror display screen mode, you may take selfies with the first camera system

The Selfie camera in folding display screen is about video-conferencing, and the 4 Megapixel specification tells us as a lot. For that goal, it does an awesome job and simply beats each inner laptop webcam we’ve performed with, by far.

Galaxy Z Fold3 Efficiency & Battery life

The Galaxy Z Fold3 has wonderful efficiency, and that’s anticipated since Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 888 computing platform powers it.The Z Flip3 runs on the identical platform, however we’ve seen a distinction (4% to eight%) in favor of the Z Fold3, maybe as a result of bigger chassis (higher cooling).

samsung galaxy z fold3 gb5 multi

The Galaxy Z Fold3 is a superb gaming platform and might run essentially the most trendy video games with such velocity. As you may see, the Z Fold3 is even a bit higher than the S21 Extremely in graphics/gaming benchmarks.

samsung galaxy z fold3 gfx bench man31

The flex nature of the chassis limits how a lot battery capability you will get (4400 mAh) for the scale. On the identical time, you’re coping with a a lot bigger show and the temptation to make use of power-hungry apps extra usually.

This battery capability means you would possibly get a decrease battery life than the Galaxy S21, particularly the S21+ or S21 Extremely. Nevertheless, I count on most individuals who undergo a typical workday to cost it solely as soon as a day. For those who’re a heavy consumer, you would possibly wish to use one of many battery optimization modes or have a approach to prime off the battery.

samsung galaxy z fold3 battery mah

The cellphone can fast-charge at 23W (67 mAh/mn), however you may need to make use of a Samsung charger just like the 35W charger ($29.99) to be 100% certain in regards to the compatibility. For reference, the Galaxy S21 Extremely hits 100 mAh/mn whereas the iPhone 12 Professional Max will get 63 mAh/mn.

We examined the charging velocity with a typical 65W USB-PD energy provide and observed that the Z Fold3 attracts 16W at most on that one. Sadly, the cell trade now expects customers to pay additional for these most charging speeds.


samsung galaxy z fold3 review 01

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 is all the pieces its followers have been ready for and just a little bit extra. Resulting in the launch, I stored an eye fixed on what potential patrons have been in search of, and for essentially the most half, they have been anticipating incremental enhancements.

A few of it was anticipated, such because the impeccable industrial design, processor velocity, and total show high quality. Different upgrades have been past expectations, just like the waterproofing and the 120Hz show. Maybe the perfect enchancment of all is the $200 decrease MSRP pricing (AT&T has as much as $1000 trade-in as effectively). At publishing time, Amazon had higher pricing (affiliate hyperlink).


Z Fold3 patrons are doing fairly a little bit of analysis earlier than buying, and that’s partly why consumer satisfaction is comparatively excessive (9/10 in line with our analysis). People who find themselves not attracted by or don’t perceive the worth proposition often shrink back from an impulse purchase.

The Galaxy Z Fold3 is certainly a multimedia beast and is the perfect 7.6-inch pill if you happen to think about its 5G connectivity, compute efficiency, and portability. Suppose you end up in conditions the place you usually sit down and wait (practice/bus commute, airport, flight) or ceaselessly watch/edit movies and pictures or play video games. In that case, the elegant Z Fold3 consumer expertise makes this handset extraordinarily tempting.

Filed in Cellphones. Learn extra about Foldable Smartphones, Samsung, Samsung Critiques and Smartphone Critiques.

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