Samsung intros 3rd-generation foldable smartphone

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Korean tech titan Samsung has launched the new Galaxy Z Fold2 device during the “Unpacked Part 2’ livestream event on Tuesday, September 1. It’s the company’s latest addition to its current set of foldable offerings that include the predecessor Galaxy Fold and the Galaxy Z Flip.

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold2 foldable smartphone in Unpacked event

Despite the pandemic, Samsung announced that the new Galaxy Z Fold2 has a price tag of $2,000, an increase of $20 from the previous version. To justify the premium cost, Samsung addressed several of the hardware shortcomings that existed in the first Fold smartphone.

“With the launch of the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold2, we closely listened to user feedback to ensure we were bringing meaningful improvements to the hardware, while also developing new innovations to enhance the user experience. Further strengthened by our industry-leading partnerships with Google and Microsoft, we’re reshaping and redefining the possibilities of the mobile device experience,” said Dr. TM Roh, president and head of Mobile Communications Business, Samsung Electronics.

Industry analyst and research firm CCS Insights predicted that smartphone shipments will take a 13% hit or roughly 1.57 billion units at a 10-year low. With the combination of market saturation, incremental feature upgrades, and “pandemic-level” pricing, a mid-tier opportunity for 5G devices is flourishing while the $1,000 price mark gets more strained.

Although the Galaxy Z Fold2 is a tough sell in the current environment, it solves the major pain points from the first device which had a middling reception. The cover display is now a larger 6.2” 2260×816 Super Amoled Infinity-O panel and can be used for common tasks. With the larger screen, users will be unfolding the phone less, even though the folding mechanism is its main gimmick.

When unfolded, the device reveals a 7.6” QXGA+ Dynamic Amoled 2x main display with a 2208×1768 resolution and 22:5:18 aspect ratio. It supports an adaptable 120Hz refresh rate but scales back the resolution to Full HD on 120Hz, and manages to put out 373 pixels-per-inch despite the screen real estate.

The new Fold also features a triple rear camera setup with Dual Optical Image Stabilization technology and a 10MP selfie camera with an 80˚field of view. A 7nm Snapdragon 865+ octa-core processor paired with an Adreno 650 GPU handles the workload, while a non-removable 4500mAh battery at 25W charging capacity powers the internals.

The Galaxy Z Fold2 will be available locally on September 25 in two colorways – Mystic Black and Mystic Bronze — and can be purchased through selected online partner merchants. The device will also arrive at Samsung stores starting October 2.

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