Samsung Unveils New Foldable Smartphones, Galaxy Buds 2, and Galaxy Watch 4
Samsung today unveiled a series of new products at a virtual event, including the Galaxy Z Fold 3 and Galaxy Z Flip 3 foldable smartphones, Galaxy Buds 2 wireless earbuds, and Galaxy Watch 4 smartwatch. We've provided a high-level summary of the new products below for Apple users who are interested in learning about the latest competition.
Galaxy Z Fold 3 and Flip 3
A key new feature of the Fold 3 is an uninterrupted 7.6-inch inner display with a 4-megapixel camera embedded under the screen, whereas the Fold 2 had a hole-punch camera. This is in addition to a trio of 12-megapixel rear lenses and a 10-megapixel front camera. The outer 6.2-inch display on the Fold 3 now supports up to a 120Hz refresh rate for smoother content, whereas only the inner display was 120Hz capable on the Fold 2.
Samsung said the Fold 3 and the Flip 3 have more durable designs, with both devices featuring stronger aluminum frames, IPX8-rated water resistance, tougher Gorilla Glass Victus display glass, and a new protective display film made with a stretchable PET material, which Samsung says makes the inner display 80% more durable than previous devices.
The Fold 3 is Samsung's first foldable smartphone with support for the S Pen, which comes in two options specifically for the device: S Pen Fold Edition and S Pen Pro. Samsung says both styluses feature a specially engineered retractable tip with "force limit technology" to protect the Fold 3's inner display from scratches and damage.
Powered by Qualcomm's Snapdragon 888, the Fold 3 runs Android 11 and is equipped with a 4,400 mAh battery, 256GB or 512GB of storage, and 12GB of RAM. The device is available in three colors: Phantom Black, Phantom Green, and Phantom Silver.
The smaller and less expensive Flip 3 sports a 6.7-inch inner display that now supports 120Hz, and an expanded 1.9-inch outer display. The device is also powered by Qualcomm's Snapdragon 888 and is equipped with a 3,300 mAh battery, 128GB or 256GB of storage, 8GB of RAM, dual 12-megapixel rear cameras, a 10-megapixel front camera, and more.
The Fold 3 and Flip 3 start at $1,799.99 and $999.99 respectively. Both devices are available for pre-order starting today, and they will launch on August 27 starting with select markets, including the United States, Europe, and Korea.
Apple is rumored to be working on a foldable iPhone, with analyst Ming-Chi Kuo expecting the device to launch in 2023 with an 8-inch display.
Galaxy Buds 2
The key attraction of Samsung's new Galaxy Buds 2 is active noise cancellation for just $149.99, making them much lower priced than the AirPods Pro, which retail for $249 but are frequently on sale for less at some retailers.
Samsung said Galaxy Buds 2 offer up to five hours of battery life with active noise cancellation enabled, and like the AirPods Pro, they are recharged in a wireless case. Galaxy Buds 2 are the lightest and smallest Galaxy Buds earbuds to date and they will be available in four colors: Graphite, White, Olive, and Lavender.
Galaxy Watch 4
Last up is the Galaxy Watch 4 and Galaxy Watch 4 Classic, powered by a new version of Wear OS that was jointly developed by Google and Samsung. In many ways, this feels like the best shot at an Android-based competitor to the Apple Watch, with the new user interface seemingly drawing some inspiration from watchOS's honeycomb grid view for apps.
Samsung said the Galaxy Watch 4 comes with an array of health and wellness features, including blood pressure measuring, atrial fibrillation and irregular heartbeat detection, blood oxygen measuring, and the ability to calculate body composition. A new Body Composition feature gives users a better understanding of their general health and fitness, with key measurements like skeletal muscle, basal metabolic rate, body water, and body fat percentage.
Tech specs for both Galaxy Watch 4 models include an Exynos W920 processor, 16GB of internal storage, 1.5GB of RAM, up to 40 hours of battery life, IP68-rated water and dust resistance, Bluetooth 5.0, and more.
The standard Galaxy Watch 4 has an aluminum casing with 40mm and 44mm display size options, while the Galaxy Watch 4 Classic has a more premium stainless steel design with 42mm and 46mm sizes. Both watches are available for pre-order in select markets starting today, with retail availability starting August 27. Pricing starts at $249.99 for the Galaxy Watch 4 and at $349.99 for the Galaxy Watch 4 Classic.