Samsung officially announced the Galaxy Z Fold 2 at its Unpacked event. It’s the successor to last year’s Galaxy Fold, with a new camera system, larger external display, and hole-punch cameras that give the new model a far more elegant and cohesive look than the original.
The new Galaxy Z Fold 2 renamed to match the Galaxy Z Flip and Z Flip 5G released earlier this year marks Samsung’s first major refresh for its flagship foldable phone, and it looks to improve on nearly every shortcoming of the original model.
Instead of an awkward, tiny external display, the Z Fold 2 has a full-size 6.2-inch screen that covers the entire front of the phone, making it far more usable without having to unfold the larger display. The main display is also bigger, at 7.6 inches. And the weird, notched corner that marred the top-right corner of the flexible interior panel is gone, too, replaced by a less obtrusive hole-punch camera that takes up far less space on the folding OLED screen, which now runs at up to a 120Hz refresh rate. The internal specs are getting a boost, too, with the Z Fold 2 set to feature Qualcomm’s latest Snapdragon 865 Plus processor.
Like the Galaxy Z Flip, the Z Fold 2 is switching from the fragile plastic screen to the same ultra-thin glass, which should be less prone to damage than the original. (That said, if it’s anything like the Z Flip, the flexible glass is still more fragile than a traditional screen.) Samsung is also bringing its “Flex Mode” from the Z Flip, allowing the Z Fold 2 to be used in halfway-open configurations and stood up on a desk.
The phone is thinner overall (it’s 6mm thick) and has a thinner gap between the displays, making it easier to fit into your pocket. Samsung says that it’s reengineered the hinge, too, for greater durability. The new hinge also features what Samsung calls “a sweeper,” which uses elastic fibers to clean dust or debris out from the hinge to prevent damage to the display.
The biggest question, of course, is how durable the Galaxy Z Fold 2 will be. The original Fold was infamously delayed for months after the first review units of the $1,980 phone began to fail due to the fragility of the plastic-covered panel. Samsung eventually released the Fold after taking time to engineer a more robust model of the device, but it still had to caution users to handle the phone with kid gloves, with warnings about dust and applying “excessive pressure” to the touchscreen when tapping it.
The Galaxy Z Fold 2 will come in both “mystic black” and “mystic bronze” colors, along with a limited edition Thom Browne edition. Samsung isn’t announcing a release date or price for the Galaxy Z Fold 2 today, although the company is promising more information on the Z Fold 2 in a second event on September 1st, when preorders will also begin.