Hands-on with the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 6: Focus on lightness

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Historically focused on productivity, the Galaxy Z Fold series stands out from the Galaxy Z Flip with its “book” format, which allows it to sport a large 7.6-inch internal screen. But this smartphone is also designed to be used closed, thanks to its external panel that aims to rival the screen of the best monobloc smartphones. And it is on this side that we spot one of the major new features that the latest from the South Korean manufacturer benefits from, the Galaxy Z Fold 6.

While the Galaxy Z Flip 6 doesn't take the risk of revising the design of its predecessor, the Fold 6 is a little more daring. The risk is very contained, since it is primarily a question of lightening the smartphone, whose weight is now 239 grams, or 7 grams more than a Galaxy S24 Ultra, and 14 grams less than the Z Fold 5. In the hand, the difference is felt, and we also appreciate that the smartphone is a little less high (153.5 mm) and a little wider (132.6 mm). Understand that its external screen, without displaying a 19.5:9 ratio like most monobloc models, offers a less stretched format, while gaining in available surface area: count 6.3 inches this year (2376 x 968 pixels), against 6.2 inches in 2023. Added to this is a greater thinness when the device is closed (12.2 mm): the Galaxy Z Fold 6 looks more and more like a classic smartphone when folded. We also appreciate the adoption of flat and matte edges, as well as the appearance of new colors (gray, midnight blue and pink).

A technical update

The open Z Fold 6 doesn't change much from its predecessor, since it features a 7.6-inch Amoled display (2160 x 1856 pixels) under which is hidden the now classic 4 Mpx photo sensor. It's in the details that Samsung innovates, with the South Korean announcing a maximum brightness of 2600 cd/m2, compared to 1750 cd/m2 on its previous folding terminals: the idea is not to be left behind by fierce competition on this element. And this is good news for the user, since this high brightness increases the readability of the screen, especially when used in direct sunlight. Good news also for the cover display of the mobile, which benefits from the same brightness, as well as a refresh rate varying from 1 to 120 Hz, thanks to the use of LTPO technology.

The Galaxy Z Fold 6 doesn't stop at these improvements alone. In a more expected manner, it features the Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 chip, logically succeeding the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 of its predecessor, and signaling in passing that the partnership between Samsung and Qualcomm continues. The chipsetoptimized for Galaxy – Qualcomm confirms that it is the same chip as the Galaxy S24 Ultra – is flanked by 12 GB of RAM as well as a vapor chamber 1.6 times larger than that of the Z Fold 5: the idea is to limit heating in order to support the performance of the device and extend its autonomy. It should be noted that Samsung has opted for a capacity of 4400 mAh, rigorously identical to that of the Z Fold 5. We can only hope that the combination of the Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 and an enlarged vapor chamber will allow it to do better, since we had noted on the 2023 model an autonomy barely exceeding 13 h 30 min on our Viser protocol.

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Finally, note that Samsung is upgrading the photo section of its Galaxy Z Flip 5. The model 6 has a 50-megapixel main sensor, like the Galaxy S24 and Galaxy S24+, and is no longer limited to 12 Mpx. We can therefore expect significantly improved results, at least in the wide-angle, since it is maintained for the ultra wide-angle (12 Mpx sensor, f/2.2 optics) and the telephoto lens (10 Mpx, x3 zoom).

Galaxy AI in the spotlight

Like all the products announced on July 10 by Samsung, the Galaxy Z Fold 6 is big on artificial intelligence features. These were introduced at the Galaxy Unpacked in January, and are being expanded today. We will come back to all the features that are making their debut with the new Z, and which include instant translation of calls in third-party applications, an enrichment of Surround to Search, which now includes QR Codes, the ability to translate text included in images when translating web pages, or even to generate elements to add to images using simple sketches. The improvements are numerous, but not entirely exclusive, since their arrival on the Galaxy Z Fold/Flip 5 and Galaxy S24 is expected before the end of the year.

to image generation

From the sketch…

The Galaxy Z Fold 6, which therefore stands out from its predecessors by its increasingly standard smartphone-like appearance, and suggests improved endurance, does not skimp on the price. While it aims to be durable, with its IP48 certification and seven years ofupdates software promised, the smartphone is announced from €1,999 (12/256 GB), or €100 more than the Galaxy Z Fold 5 at its launch. Its 12/512 GB version costs €2,199 (€2,039 for the Z Fold 5 with equal configuration), and the 1 TB version goes to €2,359 (€2,279 last year). Suffice to say that by passing the psychological threshold of €2,000, the smartphone has the right to make mistakes neither on a technical level nor on a software level.

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