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Samsung Galaxy Fold smartphone review

A smartphone that folds out into a tablet and costs $3K.

Samsung Galaxy Fold
Last updated: 07 November 2019

CHOICE verdict

If you have enough cash to splash on a Samsung Galaxy Fold, rest assured you will get noticed when you pull this unusual device out of your coat pocket or bag and unfold the beautiful 7.3-inch screen for all to see. If you don't use it unfolded like a tablet all the time then you may feel you've wasted $3000 on a clunky mobile with a 4.6-inch display that looks like a 90s brick. If you really, really want a foldable tablet phone, better to wait for the 5G version to become available.

Price: $2999
Contact: samsung.com/au/smartphones/galaxy-fold

What is it?

The name basically says it all – the Samsung Galaxy Fold is a Samsung Galaxy smartphone that folds out into a tablet.

Folded, the phone looks like a chunky brick mobile from the 90s

The specifications and features are impressive with a fast processor, several high resolution cameras, lots of memory (12GB RAM and 512GB onboard storage) and an eye-catching fold out screen that allows you to run multiple apps at the same time. Folded, the phone looks like a very long, thick mobile phone – like a chunky brick mobile from the 90s.

The 4.6-inch AMOLED display, which is the display used when folded, is not as crisp or useful and the elongated screen makes it difficult to watch video meant to be shown on a standard 16:9 or 4:3 screen. Operating in tablet mode is highly recommended to get the best out of this device.

Samsung Galaxy fold (6)

When folded the mobile appears long, thin and thick and can comfortably be carried in a coat pocket

Samsung-Galaxy-Fold_1

The folding mechanism has been improved and seems able to handle constant opening and closing

Samsung-Galaxy-Fold_2

When fully opened the Galaxy Fold turns into a small tablet, with a discernible crease in the middle

Future direction or dead end?

The main question to consider when looking at something so unique: is it a smartphone or a smart device? 

Anyone considering a smartphone and wanting to also work on a larger screen may be better served buying the latest mobile with 5.5-inch display for well under $1500 and a good tablet for under $500, then wirelessly connecting the tablet to the mobile when required. This not only saves you $1000 but you also get to keep your smartphone in your pocket.

Where can you get it?

You'll be able to buy the Galaxy Fold from any Samsung Store, and through select JB Hi-Fi and Harvey Norman stores. Telstra, Optus, and Vodafone will all range the Galaxy Fold, but you won't be able to walk into any store and get one.

If you really, really want a foldable tablet phone, better to wait for the 5G version to become available

The Galaxy Fold is eSIM enabled, which will become increasingly common, but the most disappointing move from Samsung is to release a 4G version only in Australia when a 5G variant is available in other countries<

Processor and memory options

For those who want to know what's under the hood.

  • Processor: Snapdragon 855
  • Main Unfolded Display: 7.3-inch 2152 x 1536 pixels Dynamic AMOLED
  • Folded Screen: 4.6-inch 720 x 1680 pixels Super AMOLED
  • Camera: Three main lenses (12.0 MP + 16.0 MP + 12.0 MP), two rear selfie lenses (10.0 MP + 8.0 MP) plus extra lens on back display.
  • Total weight: 276 grams
  • RAM: (memory): 12GB
  • Battery: 4380mAh
  • Storage: 512GB (Available memory 461GB)
  • Connectivity: USB (Type-C), Bluetooth 5.0 BLE, NFC, 802.11 ac/ax.
  • SIM: Dual-SIM (Hybrid), Nano-SIM (embedded) 4G network support.
  • Dimensions (HxWxD, mm): 160.9 x 117.9 x 6.9
  • Dimensions when folded (HxWxD, mm): 160.9 x 62.8 x 15.7-17.1

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