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Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 review – foldable phones are ready for the mainstream

Business Insider India logo Business Insider India 22-10-2021 Rounak Jain
Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 review – foldable phones are ready for the mainstream © Rounak Jain Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 review – foldable phones are ready for the mainstream

  • The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 is the company’s latest foldable smartphone, launched alongside its larger sibling, the Galaxy Z Fold 3.
  • While foldable phones are usually centred around offering more screen real estate, the Z Flip 3 takes the “smaller is better” approach.
  • Read our Galaxy Z Flip 3 review to find out if this should be your next smartphone.
Samsung has been one of the few major smartphone makers to bring foldable smartphones out of the shadow of gimmicky gadgets that look good but aren’t practical. The Korean smartphone maker has launched two foldable phones this year – the Galaxy Z Fold 3 and the Galaxy Z Flip 3. While the Galaxy Z Fold 3 features a book-like form factor, the Flip 3 comes with a clamshell foldable design that makes it a compact and stylish option.

The Galaxy Z Flip 3 is the cheapest foldable device yet from the company and it comes with several improvements over its predecessor.

We have been testing the Galaxy Z Flip 3 for a few weeks now, and here is our detailed review.

Also Read

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 review: Creasing through the folds

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 price in India

The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 is priced starting at ₹84,999 in India. It is available in Cream, Phantom Black and Lavender colour options and can be purchased from Amazon, Samsung online and offline stores across the country.

HDFC Bank debit and credit card users can avail a cashback of ₹7,000 on the device. In addition to this, more offers on the Z Flip 3 can be found on Samsung India’s official website.

The box includes the phone, a USB Type-C to Type-C cable for charging, a SIM ejector tool and the quick start guide.

Alternatively, if you are looking for a foldable phone with a bigger display, the Galaxy Z Fold 3 is another option worth considering.

Design and build quality

The Galaxy Z Flip 3 has retained the clamshell design that is similar to the Z Flip. It also weighs the same as its predecessor at 183 grams and is easy to hold in hand.

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One of the main improvements that the Z Flip 3 offers is that it is now rated IPX8 for water resistance, offering decent protection against water. The rear camera module has been re-arranged and the 1.9-inch outer display is much bigger compared to the 1.1-inch display on the Z Flip, allowing you to view much more information than before.

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In India, the Z Flip 3 is currently available in three colour options – Cream, Phantom Black and Lavender. All three variants come with a dual tone finish with matte finish at the bottom and glossy black finish at the top near the camera.

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Despite its clamshell design, you still cannot flip open the phone with a single hand – you will need to use both the hands and that is likely done to reduce chances of harming the display.

Display

The Galaxy Z Flip 3 comes with Samsung’s ‘Ultra Thin Glass’ and the company claims that it is 80% more durable than its predecessor and can withstand up to 2,00,000 folds, which is around 550 folds per day if you use the device for one year. Theoretically, the display should outlast your use of the device itself, but real-world variations might change your mileage.

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The Galaxy Z Flip 3 features a 6.7-inch Full HD+ Dynamic AMOLED display when unfolded. It comes with HDR10+ support and offers 120Hz refresh rate. In real-world usage, the Ultra Thin Glass does feel a little different when compared to regular phones which usually have some version of Corning’s Gorilla Glass.

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While Samsung has worked on the crease in the internal display, it is still visible and can be felt while you scroll over it. It’s not a big deal and is improved when compared to the Z Flip, but you can still see and feel it.

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When you fold the device, the outer 1.9-inch display allows you to view the weather, start a new voice recording, control music, view notifications and even capture selfies. You can even manage calls, which makes it a lot more useful than just a notification panel.

Performance

The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 is powered by the octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 chipset, which is the top-of-the-line chipset currently available from Qualcomm. It is coupled with 8GB of RAM and either 128GB or 256GB of internal storage.

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Samsung has optimized the Z Flip 3 well enough and the device flies no matter what I throw at it. From heavy games like Call of Duty: Mobile, to relatively simpler ones like Subway Surfers, everything is well optimized by now.

In terms of battery life, the Z Flip 3 falls short of competition due to its 3,300mAh battery which is much smaller compared to other flagship devices. The battery lasts for a day with normal usage, but this dips down if you watch too many videos or play games.

The device is powered by a 3,300mAh battery and comes with 15W wired charging and 10W Qi wireless charging. The 15W charging support is noticeably slower when compared to the 25W charging offered on other Galaxy flagships, including the Z Fold 3.

The Galaxy Z Flip 3 does not ship with a charging brick and the company only offers a USB Type-C to Type-C cable in the box.

Camera

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The Galaxy Z Flip 3 is slightly modest when it comes to cameras – it has a dual camera setup as opposed to the triple camera setup that we’ve come to see from Samsung on most of its premium smartphones. There is a pair of 12MP cameras on the back and a 10MP selfie camera on the front.

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In daylight conditions, the Z Flip 3 performs well, capturing details with good colour reproduction. The images tend to be slightly oversaturated, but they look great on the phone and social media. However, if you prefer neutral tones, you might want to use the manual mode.

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The Z Flip 3 can record videos at up to 4K resolution with 60 frames per second (FPS). The videos turn out well and the colors are accurate and vibrant.

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The Z Flip 3 also performs well in indoor lighting conditions even with multiple light sources.

The secondary display allows you to use the primary camera to capture selfies and these are better than the images captured using the device’s selfie camera.

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The 10MP selfie camera does a decent job of capturing photos in both daylight as well as indoor conditions.

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The camera software is the same as other Samsung flagships, offering a wide range of features while maintaining the ease of use.

Should you buy the Galaxy Z Flip 3?

The Galaxy Z Flip 3 is perhaps the most practical foldable phone that you can buy right now. Foldable phones are no longer gimmicky and they are sturdy enough to withstand regular usage without a lot of fuss. With that said, you will still have to be careful to not let a lot of dust accumulate on the main display.

Apart from being practical, the Z Flip 3 is also a style statement on its own. Its diminutive form factor when folded makes it easy to carry around. If you are looking for a break from the boring glass slabs that most modern smartphones have become, the Galaxy Z Flip 3 is worth your consideration.

SEE ALSO:

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 review: Creasing through the folds

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