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Samsung Galaxy Z Flip5 review: usable with Good Lock

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip5 review
Picture: TechnikNews
(Post picture: © 2023 TechnikNews)

Next few weeks the time had finally come: Samsung introduced the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip5 and fold5 two new foldables are officially presented, which come with some changes, especially in terms of design. While the Fold is a bit thinner and lighter than its predecessor, the external display of the Flip5 has been significantly revised. 

It now measures 3,4 inches instead of 1,9 inches, which should offer some advantages in everyday life. In addition, it comes with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen2 and an improved folding mechanism. We will now take a close look at that and much more in this detailed test report.

Verdict on the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip5

My verdict on the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip5 is pretty positive, because this smartphone does some things right and puts a smile on my face every day. Because of the better hinge, folding is just fun and the larger outer display is a real game changer in combination with Good Lock. The external display finally makes sense. I just hope that popular apps - e.g. B. Instagram, X, YouTube, Google, etc. - will be adapted to the aspect ratio in the near future. The brighter interior display is also a successful improvement and the performance, the battery life and the software are satisfactory, although not too much has changed in these points compared to the predecessor.

Of course there are also a few points of criticism. The speakers and the vibration motor are not at flagship level and unfortunately Samsung has not made any improvements to the cameras, although there was already a lot of criticism with the Flip4. In addition, there is a rather high RRP of 1.199 euros. Personally, I would wait a few more weeks until the price is around 1.000 euros, because then I think you can ignore the few criticisms and get an excellent foldable.

Buy Samsung Galaxy Z Flip5

Unboxing and scope of delivery

Both the black box and the scope of delivery are pretty unspectacular. In addition to the Flip5, only the usual paperwork, a SIM needle and a USB-C to USB-C charging cable are included. You won't find a power adapter, headphones or a case here. At least one power supply would have been more than appropriate for an RRP of 1.199 euros.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 unboxing and scope of delivery

Picture: TechnikNews

The exterior - lots of new!

Purely in terms of dimensions, it has changed compared to the predecessor didn't do too much, which isn't a bad thing either. The Z Flip5 is quite long, but not as wide as many current smartphones, which means that the foldable can still be operated quite well with one hand. In addition, it is also very grippy in the hand, but since the high-gloss metal frame is quite angular, it is not as ergonomic in the hand as smartphones with rounded edges.

The back is made of glass with a high-gloss finish, which almost magically attracts fingerprints. In my opinion, this is a clear step backwards, because the Flip3 from 2021 still had a frosted glass back, which feels more unique and is not as prone to fingerprints and signs of wear. Nonetheless, the back of the Flip5 also feels quite premium. While almost the entire upper half is covered with the display, the lower half is colored in "Mint", "Graphite", "Cream" or "Lavender" depending on the color version. I tested the model in "Mint", which looks good, but would not be my first choice.

The large interior display – finally brighter!

If we turn the smartphone over, we see a 6,7-inch OLED display with a resolution of 2.640 x 1.080 pixels, a smooth 120 Hertz refresh rate and a maximum brightness of 1.750 nits. Even in direct sunlight, I was always able to read the display well. Colors are reproduced sufficiently realistically and Samsung has finally visibly improved the viewing angle stability compared to last year's foldables. I still see room for improvement here, but you can get by with it. Unfortunately, the display (or the foil) is very susceptible to scratches and the crease in the middle has hardly changed. I would have expected more here.

The new folding mechanism – it finally works better!

The South Korean manufacturer has made one of the biggest improvements in the new folding mechanism. While there was still a small gap on the hinge bar in the predecessors, the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip5 finally closes it flush. This not only results in a nicer and thinner design, but also reduces the risk of dust and dirt getting lost in the hinge. In addition, the folding mechanism now feels even more stable and does not produce any unpleasant noises, as it did with mine fold4 was the case.

The interior – not much new!

Inside is the Snapdragon 8 Gen2 from Qaulcomm, which is supported by 8 GB of RAM and either 256 GB or 512 GB of internal memory. I still think 8 GB of RAM is sufficient, but I expect more for a recommended retail price of 1.199 euros. Nevertheless, the everyday performance is really good. Apps start and close extremely quickly and you won't find any stutters or delays here. The RAM management also works great and games look great on the Flip5. It doesn't get much better at the moment.

Smooth animations thanks to One UI 5!?

In addition, animations are played back extremely smoothly, which in my opinion is not only due to the 120 Hertz refresh rate, but also to the software. With One UI 5, Samsung has finally managed to get gesture controls up to flagship level. There are finally no more delays! Other than that, not much has really changed in One UI. The idea still remains that almost all elements can be reached with one hand, which I really like. The same applies to update support, because the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip5 will be supplied with updates for five years, which is a clear statement in the Android segment. Hats off! The "flex mode" and the associated features are of course also on board again.

Solid battery life

The battery measures 3.700 mAh, which is slightly less than the HUAWEI P50 Pocket is. Nothing has changed compared to the Flip4. Nevertheless, I was quite satisfied with the battery life. I've always gotten through a day and ended up with 17% to 26% battery left. My screen-on-time was 5 to 6 hours. Heavy users will definitely not get through a day with the Flip5, but the battery life should be enough for everyone else. Unfortunately, fast charging is only possible with up to 25 watts, which is extremely weak compared to the competition. At least wireless charging is possible.

Miscellaneous - Speakers, Vibration Motor, Fingerprint Sensor & more

What else is there? The stereo speakers are sufficiently loud, but they sound a bit thin. I also find the vibration motor to be a bit too weak. The fingerprint sensor, on the other hand, is satisfactory. Even if it's a bit difficult to reach for my taste, it unlocks the smartphone quickly and reliably. Last but not least, I would like to mention positively that the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip5 is protected according to IPX8 - against the ingress of water.

The external display – finally usable!

The new external display of the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3,4 measures an impressive 5 inches. For comparison, the predecessor is only equipped with a 1,9 inch external display, which was hardly usable in everyday life. As with the interior display, it is an OLED panel with great black and contrast values. The viewing angle stability and the maximum brightness are also rock solid. Unfortunately, the refresh rate is only 60 Hertz and the resolution is only 720 x 748 pixels (306 PPI). While the missing 120 Hertz is not too negative, the low resolution is actually more annoying than I would have initially thought. Individual pixels can definitely be seen.

Of course, the practical use of this smartphone is much more important than the quality. The external displays of the predecessors didn't offer any real added value, but that's changing with the Flip5. In the settings there is the item "Front display", where you can place widgets on the display, for example. Here users can display the calendar, the weather, current calls, a timer, apps and much more. The selected widgets can be accessed on the home screen with a swipe to the left. If you swipe to the right, incoming notifications are displayed.

Good Lock – game changer!?

What about apps? Apps can of course also be used on the external display, but the selection in the settings is very limited. Only YouTube, Netflix, Google Maps, WhatsApp and other messaging apps are offered here. With a little trick, however, you can use all apps on the external display. All you have to do is download the “Good Lock” app from the pre-installed Galaxy Store and then install the “MultiStar” menu in “Good Lock”. Then you can select all the apps you would like to use on the external display under the items "I love Galaxy Foldables" and "Launcher Widget".

Even if almost all apps are not really adapted to the display format, I really enjoyed using the external display in many situations. Especially for quickly replying to incoming notifications.

Camera – the biggest weakness

On the back there is space for a dual camera, which is set up as follows:

  • 12 megapixel main camera – f/1.8 – 1/1.76″ – OIS
  • 12 megapixel ultra wide-angle camera - f/2.2 - 123˚
Samsung Galaxy Z Flip5 camera

Picture: TechnikNews

Shots with both cameras are okay in good lighting conditions. As is typical for Samsung, the images are reproduced brightly and saturated, which often does not correspond to reality, but should certainly appeal to some people. The dynamic range is (mostly) good and the sharpness is okay, but there is definitely room for improvement here. In poor light conditions, the photos quickly start to become noisy and the sharpness is rather disappointing. Here is the difference to Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra as well as to other competitors extremely large.

Even if the cameras are the biggest weakness of the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip5, I would like to finally praise the selfies with the main camera when it is closed. These are just terrific.

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Fabian Menzel

Fabian has been part of since mid-September 2020 TechnikNews and regularly supplies the site with various news, but also with some test reports on smartphones. He's having so much fun and is extremely grateful to have such a great team by his side. In his free time, he enjoys listening to music and occasionally taking photos with his Huawei Mate 50 Pro.

Fabian has already written 300 articles and left 24 comments.

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