The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 5G is the latest flagship smartphone of Samsung and it’s replaced the popular Note series which was introduced back in 2011. Samsung might have replaced the Galaxy Note series with their new foldable smartphones but they’ve brought the popular features of the Galaxy Note series to the Fold including the S Pen
It’s tougher and better
One of the things that they’ve improved on the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 5G is the build quality of the smartphone. They’re now using armor aluminum for its body so you know it’s tough and also solid and compared to the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold2 5G, this one is a lot better and more premium to hold.
Having armor aluminum for its body doesn’t mean that the smartphone would have a bulkier and heavier body. Actually, the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 5G is even lighter and even slimmer which makes it less bulky than the predecessor but if you’re used to using the normal monobloc phones then you might find the Galaxy Z Fold3 5G a little bulky when using in one hand.
As for the hinge, the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 5G’s hinge looks the same as before but the gap between the two displays when folded is narrower compared to the previous generation which makes the smartphone look better when folded and of course, less bulky.
On the right side, we still got here the fingerprint scanner of the smartphone which is pretty much the same as the previous generation of the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold and below, there’s the USB-C port of the smartphone and unfortunately, the smartphone can only support up to 25W of charging versus most smartphones in the market that has a faster charging now.
A better display
The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 5G comes with a 6.2-inch Dynamic AMOLED 2X display which is the same size as before and then there’s the 7.6-inch display inside. These might be the same sizes from the previous generation but these displays are an upgrade from the previous generation. First, there’s the 6.2-inch cover display that now features a smoother 120Hz refresh rate and inside, we now have a better foldable AMOLED Flex display with an under-display camera that hides the selfie camera of the smartphone.
But here’s the thing, I really appreciate the 120Hz display on the cover display of the smartphone but I barely use it for gaming so I still use the foldable display for that one but you can really appreciate the 120Hz cover display when you’re browsing the web or when you’re navigating thru the apps on your smartphone.
Thankfully, the cover display still packs a punch-hole selfie camera so we have a choice of using the under-display camera on the flex display of the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 5G or the punch hole camera on the cover display but we’re gonna talk about the quality of the cameras of the smartphone later on. As for the quality of the cover display of the smartphone well, I do like it and it’s very usable outside and again, the colors are vivid and nice since this one is an AMOLED display.
For the flex display of the Galaxy Fold3 5G, as expected, it’s nice and it’s way better than the previous generation when it comes to quality as I can have brighter and more accurate colors on this one. But for first time foldable smartphone users, you would still appreciate the beauty and the saturation of the AMOLED display from Samsung and yes, the creases are still here which isn’t a surprise for me as the crease is not new to me, and if you’re curious if it does affect my usage, well, no. I’m not so sure yet when it comes to using S Pen on the Galaxy Z Fold3 5G but overall, it’s still a good and accurate display when I’m using it.
As for the under-display camera, yes, the under-display camera of the smartphone is very noticeable as it tends to have slightly different colors. Despite not being a perfect under-display camera on the smartphone, I still love to have this feature because when I’m playing games like Genshin Impact on the smartphone, I tend to not notice the UDC of the smartphone but instead appreciate the full screen goodness of the foldable display of the smartphone that I’ve been using for gaming.
Overall, the foldable display and the cover display of the smartphone are an upgrade from the previous generation despite the same size. The 120Hz refresh rate is a nice addition to the cover display and whether I’m looking at photos or playing games, both displays are excellent in that matter.
Decent Battery Life
For the battery of this foldable smartphone, the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 5G comes with a 4400mAH battery which is a little bit smaller than the previous generation but that doesn’t mean that the smartphone doesn’t have a long battery life because I actually got the same battery life that I’m getting on my Samsung Galaxy Z Fold2 5G.
For this smartphone, I’m getting around 14-15 hours of battery life on normal usage and that’s a combination of using the cover display and also the foldable display of the smartphone. Basically, the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 5G will give you a whole day of battery life without problems on the smartphone.
A better software optimization
For the software, the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 5G comes with OneUI 3.1.1 based on Android 11 and yes, it was flawless for the smartphone and it’s an improvement over the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold2 5G. Most of the features that are now available on this smartphone are now available for the Galaxy Z Fold2 5G including better multi-tasking on the smartphone and pinning of the apps on the homescreen so you can have better multitasking on the smartphone.
One of the new features that I love on the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 5G is I can set an aspect ratio for individual apps which I find very useful as some of the applications that we’ve ran on the previous generation weren’t really that good because of the aspect ratio of the foldable display. And of course, since we got here a larger display on the smartphone, I could have more space for productivity as I can open apps side by side on the smartphone. With the labs in the settings, I can customize a lot more on the smartphone.
When it comes to gaming, I really appreciate that the smartphone doesn’t stretch out the apps anymore when I open games on the cover display then switch to the foldable display of the smartphone by unfolding it. So yeah, you don’t need to restart the app anymore in case you want to use the foldable display of the smartphone from the cover display.
As for the performance, we got here a Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 processor inside which is powerful enough and Samsung has managed to tone down the temperatures of the smartphone when playing games for a longer time. Basically, the smartphone can decimate most games that are available on the Play store without a problem.
We tried Genshin Impact on 60fps at the highest settings and as expected, I was able to get of up to 60fps on the smartphone but it wasn’t consistent as the game gets even heavier. Nonetheless, the game was enjoyable to play on the large screen. Not just that because we were also able to play PS2 games using DamonPS2 on the smartphone and it was flawless. We were also able to play Nintendo Switch games on the smartphone which is really taxing on most smartphones and even the flagship ones.
Not the best, but still a flagship camera
For the camera, the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 5G comes with triple-lens rear camera. There’s the 12MP wide-angle camera, 12MP ultra wide-angle camera, and then there’s the 12MP telephoto camera and it’s capable of up to 10x zoom on the smartphone. For the selfie camera, there’s the 10MP selfie camera on the cover display and then there’s the 4MP selfie camera on the foldable display of the smartphone.
And yes, they are on a flagship level and it’s way better than the one on the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3 5G. The ones that we got on the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 5G are comparable to the ones on the Samsung Galaxy S21 series. In our shots, we got the nice colors on the camera and it was sharp at well-lit conditions but it’s a hit and miss for a flagship level on lowlight conditions.
For zooming, I felt that the 10x zoom on the smartphone isn’t enough but at least, the 10x shots that we got on the smartphone gives enough details for the smartphone.
As for the selfies, the 10MP selfie camera on the cover display of the smartphone was good and it’s a little bit better than the previous generation. Most of the time, we can shoot pretty good selfies on the smartphone in both well-lit conditions and at lowlight. Check out the shots that we took using the 10MP selfie camera of the smartphone.
As for the under-display camera of the smartphone, there’s the 4MP selfie camera on the foldable display and it does offer a far inferior quality compared to the 10MP selfie camera of the smartphone. Shooting at decent lighting conditions will still give you an inferior quality and at lowlight, the quality drops drastically as it produces soft selfies on the smartphone.
Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 5G Review: Verdict
The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 5G is a more refined version of the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold2 5G but it comes with a lot of new features including a stronger build, an under-display camera, S Pen support, better display, and IP6X water resistance but the best part about the smartphone is the price. The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 5G’s starting price is Php87,990 which is way lower compared to the previous Galaxy Fold smartphones.
The hardware and features definitely mean that the smartphone is made for those people who want the best flagship smartphones in where they can be productive as we got here a large display and also powerful hardware and features inside.
You might not be a fan of the camera as this one is still far from the one on the ultra version but this one still got the chops to perform like a flagship smartphone. As for the build, well, the bulky and thick body of the smartphone might not be for everyone but I’m pretty sure that you’ll appreciate the foldable form factor of this one when you use the smartphone for browsing content and for work.
The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 5G is definitely for those people who are always on the go and wants to have a powerhouse in their pocket whether they want it for gaming or for work. I’m pretty sure that you’ll appreciate the S Pen support and the large foldable display of the smartphone. These things makes the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 5G the king of foldable smartphones.
If you want something more portable but still a foldable and a more affordable one, you can go for the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3 5G.
The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 5G is now available in the Philippines and you can get it for Php87,990 for the 12GB+256GB variant.
Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 5G Specs
- Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 processor
- 12GB RAM
- 256GB/512GB Internal Storage UFS 3.1
- Main display: 7.6-inch QXGA+ Dynamic AMOLED 2X (22.5:18) 2208×1768, 120Hz refresh rate
- Cover Display: 6.2-inch HD+ Super AMOLED (24.5:9) 2268×832, 120Hz refresh rate
- Cover camera: 10MP selfie camera, f2.2
- Under display camera (foldable display): 4MP selfie camera, f1.8
- Rear Triple Camera:
- 12MP Ultra Wide Angle Camera, f2.2
- 12MP Wide-angle camera, Dual Pixel AF, OIS, f1.8
- 12MP Telephoto Camera, PDAF, OIS, f2.4, 2x optical zoom, up to 10x digital zoom
- WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS, A-GPS
- LTE, 5G
- Armor Aluminum body
- 4400mAh battery
- Wired and Wireless Charging
- Android 11 with One UI
- Phantom Green, Phantom Black, and Phantom Green