Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3 5G First Impression – Ready for Mainstream?

In 2019 Samsung unveiled its first commercial foldable smartphone, the Galaxy Fold. It’s arguably a bold approach to making foldable smartphones the next-gen of smartphones to come.

Fast forward, in 2021 Samsung has released 5 foldable under its Galaxy Z-series; the Galaxy Z Fold2 5G, Galaxy Z Flip, Galaxy Z Flip 5 and of course the all-new Galaxy Z Fold3 5G and Galaxy Z Flip3 5G. Samsung even brought down the price close to its Galaxy’s flagship smartphones and Samsung direct competition’s flagship smartphones.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3 5G Flex Mode

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3 5G Specs

  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 5G (5nm) Octa-core Kyro 680 & Adreno 660
  • 8GB of LPDDR5 RAM
  • 128GB/256GB UFS 3.1 Storage (Non-expandable)
  • Main Display: 6.7-inch 2,640 x 1,080 Infinity Flex Dynamic AMOLED 2X, Adaptive 120Hz, HDR10+, 1,200 nits Peak Brightness
  • Cover Display: 1.9-inch 512 x 260 SuperAMOLED
  • Rear Camera: 12-megapixels f/1.8, Dual Pixel PDAF, OIS + 12-megapixels F/2.2 Ultrawide
  • Front Camera: 10-megapixels f/2.4
  • 3,300 mAh Battery (15W Wired & 10W Wireless)
  • Side-mounted Fingerprint Scanner, NFC, Samsung Pay (No MST Support)
  • Dimension & Weight: 155 x 72.2 x 6.9 mm, 183g
  • Built: IPX8 Water Resistant, Ultra Thin Glass Main Display, Corning Gorilla Glass Victus Rear Glass & Armor Aluminium Frame
  • Price: RM 3,999 (128GB) / RM 4,199 (256GB)

Folks from Samsung Malaysia sent a unit of the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3 5G for me to review and here’s my first impression of the device after 3 days of using it as my daily driver.

If you prefer to watch my first impression of the device, you can check out FastView here;

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3 5G – Design

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3 5G Display
ASUS ROG Phone 5 vs Galaxy Z Flip3 5G

As the name suggested, it folds or flips the device in half. Comparing it side by side, it doesn’t look any different from the usual candy bar design smartphone when it’s opened. It still has the power button, volume rocker, USB C port charger, speaker, cameras on the front and rear.

The power button is a capacitive button where it recognises scrolling and is also doubled as a fingerprint scanner. It positioned pretty up high even for a big hand like myself also hard to reach. Instead, I use Face Recognition to unlock and it’s instant. no to mention the volume buttons are even further up, Samsung perhaps should consider placing it on the left instead.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3 5G Armor Aluminium
Armor Aluminium

Samsung uses a stronger and lighter Armor Aluminium frame which refined its hinge. The hinge does feel stiffer in a good way and provide enough resistance to let it open at various angles. The outer glass is a slab of Corning Gorilla Glass Victus, the toughest glasses in the mobile industry.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3 5G Compact

What makes the Z Flip3 more practical is the compactness when the display is shut. It can go in any pocket, pouch and even fit in a tiny clutch handbag or purse. There’s nothing much fall short in terms of usability as a normal smartphone.

Oh ya! The Galaxy Z Fold3 and Z Flip3 are the first foldable smartphones that are rated with IPX8. It’s a groundbreaking headway bringing the foldable one step closer to prime time.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3 5G – Display

Due to folding display technology limitations as of now, the crease is still visible to look and touch. According to Samsung, the display is 80% more durable compared to its predecessor. There’s a pre-affixed PET film protector that does feel and smooth like glass.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3 5G Display

The 6.7-inch main display has a rather tall screen ratio at 22:9 with 2,640 x 1,080 resolution. Featuring the best Samsung in-house Dynamic AMOLED 2X panel which is bright and vibrant with great deep black. It even gets an Adaptive 120Hz Refresh Rate and supports HDR10+ content. There isn’t any complaint with the display quality.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3 5G – Cover Display

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3 5G Cover DIsplay
1.9-inch Display Cover

Finally, Samsung has made things right on the cover display, it’s more usable now with some useful widgets, able to read notifications now and even swipe up to launch Samsung Pay – nice!

Swipe Gestures

  • Double Tap – Wake/Lock
  • Swipe Left – Switch Widgets/Control
  • Swipe Right – Read Notifications
  • Swipe Down – Quick Settings Ringer/Brightness
  • Swipe Up – Launch Samsung Pay

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3 5G – Performance

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3 5G Performance

I have yet run any synthetic benchmark tests, I’m glad to see the flagship SoC used on this device. The Qualcomm Snapdragon888 offers a pretty good user experience with no stutter nor lags. The device does get warm when comes to playing 3D intensive games and even video recording. It’s a known issue for all Snapdragon 888, even on gaming phones like ROG Phone 5.

Comes in two configurations; 8GB LPDDR5 RAM with 128GB or 256GB internal storage with no microSD card expansion slot.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3 5G – Camera

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3 5G Camera

It isn’t much incremental in this department, featuring the same dual 12-megapixels cameras; a Dual-Pixel autofocus 12-megapixels f/1.8 aperture with Optical Image Stabilization main camera and a 12-megapixels f/2.2 ultrawide angle. The camera does up to 4K recording at 30fps. Not a groundbreaking camera setup but it’s a pretty good everyday use camera with no compromise.

As for the front camera is a 10-megapixels f/2.4 located right at the top centre of the display. The same front camera you found on the Samsung Galaxy S21+.

More photos and videos samples on my full review, so far it’s pretty good thanks to the powerful ISP from the Snapdragon 888 processor.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3 5G – Battery

Having just a 3,300 mAh battery on such a power hunger hardware like Snapdragon 888 processor and 120Hz display. Furthermore, it only supports 15W Adaptive Fast Charging and 10W Wireless Fast Charging. This had me reluctant to pop in my SIM card, I’m curious to know what’s the battery life in real-life use.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3 5G Wireless Charge

On the first charge I use, the battery did drops pretty fast which get me around 3 hours of screen-on-time. This is probably due to new device fresh setup with apps downloads, install and sync in the background.

Coming from the first-gen Samsung Galaxy Fold owner, I can attest the advancement is significantly especially on the display, hinges as well as built. Overall it’s a fun and enjoyable phone to use. People around me are also curious about what phone that I’m using when I scan the MySejahtera QR code or making payments with Samsung Pay.

This is just a first look at the all-new Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3 5G. I’ll have a more in-depth review of this device after 2 weeks of use. I will cover more on the performance, camera, battery life and my thought of having it as my driver. Will I continue to use or switch back to my trusty Galaxy Fold?

The pre-order of the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3 5G is still ongoing, you can get RM 600 Samsung E-voucher plus Samsung Care+ which is worth RM 699. There are a total of 7 colour options; Cream, Phantom Black, Green, Lavender and three more Samsung Exclusive only colours; Gray, White and Pink.

It’s available at samsung.com/my, Samsung Experience Stores, Samsung Authorized Partners and major Telco.

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