The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 improved in key areas from the Galaxy Z Fold 3. It is lighter, packs a better primary camera, and has improvements under the hood. However, it is not perfect.
Samsung hasn’t worked on a few essential factors for two years, and with the foldable form factor getting more traction with increasing competition, all eyes are on what Samsung will do for its next big release. Here are seven things I want to see from the Galaxy Z Fold 5.
A nonexistent crease
The Honor Magic Vs showed us that big foldable smartphones can have better hinge designs to reduce the crease. The gearless hinge holds the two sections of the Magic Vs together, and there is no gap between the two parts when closed. Surprisingly, there is minimal crease when unfolded. The Xiaomi Mi Mix Fold has a similar design with a lesser crease than the Galaxy Z Fold 4.
It is time for Samsung to overhaul its hinge approach for the bigger foldable. It’s used the same design for a while now, and it still rules the U.S. market, but only because the Honor, Xiaomi, and Oppo foldables aren’t available in the country. But if Samsung wants to seriously compete with other foldables in Europe or Asia, the company needs to rework the crease to make it less visible.
Better battery life and faster charging
The Galaxy Z Fold 4 packs the same size battery as the Galaxy Z Fold 3 at 4,400mAh, which also charges at the same 25 watts. It’s 2023, and 25W is simply not enough for any flagship smartphone. Fortunately, the Galaxy S23 Plus and Galaxy S23 Ultra offer 45W fast charging, so I expect the tech to come to the more expensive Fold series this year.
The Galaxy Z Fold 4 lasts me all day only on moderate use. If I use it to its full potential with multitasking and navigation, my battery anxiety kicks in by the evening. For a phone that starts at $1,800 and almost demands you use it regularly, that’s not ideal.
Big camera improvements
I don’t expect the 200MP camera from the Galaxy S23 Ultra to come to the Galaxy Z Fold 5, but I’d still like to see better camera performance. A 50MP primary camera like on the Fold 4 should be enough, but the telephoto and ultrawide cameras shouldn’t feel like an afterthought.
The Galaxy S22 Ultra and the S23 Ultra have spoiled me with their zoom capabilities. I hope Samsung gives us a better zoom camera this time around. I click a lot of 3x and 10x photos now, and the Fold 4 just doesn’t cut it for the latter.
Plus, the selfie shooter present under the folding display isn’t the best. It still puts out fuzzy photos. I hope that things will improve with the Galaxy Z Fold 5. This mixed camera performance was easier to forgive a couple of years ago, but as the Z Fold enters its fifth generation, it’s high time Samsung makes some big camera improvements.
Integrated S Pen slot
It is likely that the Galaxy Z Fold 5 will have S Pen support because the previous two generations of the series supported the stylus. But Samsung didn’t provide a built-in S Pen slot on either device. And it’s incredibly annoying. If I am using a stylus with my phone, I want a place to keep it with the phone.
The bad news? Current rumors suggest Samsung is not including an S Pen slot on the Z Fold 5. It’s reported the company was toying with the idea, but ultimately decided not to move forward with it as a result of it taking up too much space. We’ll have to wait until we see the final product to know for sure what happens here, but I have my fingers crossed that Samsung finds a way to make the S Pen slot a reality.
A thinner and lighter design
The Galaxy Z Fold 4 is a handful. It’s a big device and I expect it to weigh a lot, but making it thinner and lighter is definitely on my list.
Samsung worked on the design to shed about 8 grams on the Fold 4 compared to the Fold 3. It made a difference, but after using the Oppo Find N foldable, my expectations of what my wrists can handle with a big foldable phone have changed. The Oppo phone is smaller, yes, but it still sets a remarkable example for the design of all foldables. Finding additional ways to reduce the Z Fold’s footprint is no small task, but it’s one I hope Samsung is working on.
A wider cover display
The current 6.2-inch screen size on the Z Fold 4’s cover display seems enough on paper, but in practice, it’s a bit odd to use. I’m someone whose messages are filled with typos even if I’m typing on the big screen of the iPhone 14 Pro Max, so the slim profile of the Fold 4 cover display makes it harder for me to type without mistakes.
Using the Oppo Find N was a much better experience with the cover screen. It’s smaller and wider and works like any other slab smartphone. I don’t want the same dimensions for the Galaxy Z Fold 5, but having a wider and shorter display might help the ergonomics — while also improving my typing capabilities.
Make it less expensive
The $1,800 price tag of the Galaxy Z Fold 4 is a lot to consider. The foldable form factor is no more a niche segment. There are better-designed foldables like the Oppo Find N2 at a cheaper price tag than the Fold 4. Samsung’s high prices were easier to justify with the Z Fold 2 and original Galaxy Fold, but it’s time we see prices become (somewhat) reasonable.
It’s not usual for a company to drop the price of its next iteration, and I’d love to see a less expensive Fold 5.
The Galaxy Z Fold 5 has so much potential
I know, a lot of this is wishful thinking. On one hand, I want an S Pen slot in the device; on the other, I want it to be thinner and lighter. I want the Galaxy Z Fold 5 to have a better hinge with a lesser crease and to be less expensive at the same time.
But I’m not here to make sense. If any company can do all of this, it’s Samsung with all its research and development prowess. And this makes the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 an exciting device to look forward to — even if my entire wish list doesn’t come true.