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Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 review

The latest Samsung phone divides in two once more. We’ve already been here. I am pampered since I get access to a lot of new phones (it’s my work), but the Galaxy Z Fold 5 is Samsung’s sixth book-style folding phone since 2019 – and things are starting to seem a little similar.

This smartphone resembles the Z Fold 4 and even the Z Fold 3, but it remains the greatest book-style folding phone available, despite greater competition from the Google Pixel Fold, Huawei Mate X3, and Vivo X Fold 2.

The key is Samsung’s software. Because of the app layout, practical versatility, and S-Pen input compatibility, it’s the finest on the market.

However, you should consider if you truly need a foldable like this, as the Z Fold 5 is still prohibitively pricey. However, if you want to be on the bleeding edge of mobile technology while still purchasing a truly superb phone, this is the one to choose.

Design & build

  • First Z Fold to shut flat
  • Sturdy hinge mechanism
  • Matt glass back

The Z Fold 5 is a revised version of the Z Fold 3 from 2021, whereas the Z Fold 4 from 2022 scarcely altered anything. The most recent design adjustments are that the Z Fold 5 closes fully flat, a feat recently achieved by Samsung’s competitors and one that it had to match. It meant less dust accumulated in the crease while it was in my pocket.

It’s the thinnest Fold yet, measuring 13.4mm when closed, yet it’s still a paperweight at 253g, dense, and fashioned like a gold bullion bar.

My gorgeous ‘Icy Blue’ review gadget has a matt glass back that covers any fingerprints that the metal sides do not. If you buy it through Samsung’s website, you can also get it in black, cream, or a less-spotted blue and grey.

The hinge is also quite sturdy, remaining open at any angle. This firmness contributes to the phone’s very premium feel, which – unbelievably – is IPX8 water resistant and might survive a swim in the pool.

You should still ask yourself if you really need a foldable phone

This is a foldable that even I with my little hands can use and type on one-handed thanks to the tall-and-thin design that incorporates a slim outside display. I can’t type with one hand on most ordinary smartphones, let alone broader folding phones like the Pixel Fold.

Because the phone has a fingerprint sensor on the right side, I can simply unlock it with one hand while closed. Surprisingly, this phone is simpler to operate with one hand than any Galaxy S23 or iPhone 14!

The haptics are also excellent, being punchy and clipped when needed with the keyboard while still being powerful enough to feel in a purse or pocket. There are no cheap buzzing sounds here, only excellence.

Galaxy Z Fold 5

Screen & speakers

  • 7.6in LTPO 120Hz inner AMOLED screen
  • 6.2in 120Hz outer AMOLED screen
  • Dual stereo speakers

The Galaxy Z Fold 5 is distinguished by its inner folding display. Thankfully, despite the visible wrinkle along the center, this is a pretty excellent panel that I appreciated.

Other foldable device manufacturers, including as Motorola and Huawei, have smoothed out this seam, but Samsung’s is still visible. It’s smack dab in the middle of a 7.6-inch AMOLED display that otherwise looks fantastic. After all, Samsung has a display business, and it appears to keep its best for its own goods.

The 2176 x 1812 screen is equipped with LTPO technology, which allows it to dynamically refresh between 1- and 120Hz depending on the app or what you’re doing, mostly to preserve battery life. Apps appear strong and brilliant on a display where colors jump almost cartoonishly in ‘Vivid’ mode right out of the box. You may set this to ‘Natural’ and play about with both to obtain the desired effect.

The Galaxy Z Fold 5 is all about its inner folding display

In its attempt to regulate blue light based on ambient light, Samsung’s ‘Eye comfort shield’ setting makes the screen seem even worse. It’s not near as excellent as Apple’s True Tone technology, which performs far better on iPhones.

The inner screen of the Z Fold 5 is ideal for full-screen apps or seeing two apps side by side due to its 21.6:18 aspect ratio. Full-screen video is less pleasurable because you have black bar letterboxing whether you hold it portrait or landscape. Apps like YouTube or Twitch are preferable since there is enough space for the video window as well as all of the comment or chat boxes.



The inside screen is also S-Pen pen capable, which I was able to test with the new Slim S-Pen Case attachment. It’s a phone cover that hooks on and holds a newly flat and thin S-Pen Fold Edition in the rear so you can take it about more conveniently. It’s considerably superior than the last Fold’s awful, thick covers, which housed a full-size S-Pen.

The screen’s plastic layers make writing on it feel effortless, but it’s a long way from paper. I took a lot of notes for my review on the huge screen with Samsung Notes, and Samsung has also collaborated with popular iPad app GoodNotes to offer S-Pen support to the android app.

If you take a lot of notes, you’ll appreciate being able to do so on your phone with a screen that isn’t too small – this is a better bet for the S-Pen than the S23 Ultra, which comes with one built into the phone. It’s also useful if you need to sign documents regularly, but you could also want to give your buddies silly drawings.

while closed, the phone has a 6.2in AMOLED screen on the front that can refresh between a more limited range of 48-120Hz while in adaptive mode, but still looks amazing. Because I have small hands, I prefer the gangly 23.1:9 aspect ratio, so it’s a book-style foldable that I can use one-handed when closed. Most normal phones are too broad for me to type one-handed with a thumb, but the Z Fold 5’s exterior display allows me to do so easily.

You will struggle with typos and everything being too little if you have bigger hands.

Stereo speakers are located on the top and bottom of the phone’s left side when held unfurled. They have a rich, surprisingly realistic sound that works well with YouTube and gaming.

… the Galaxy Z Fold 5 has near flawless performance

Specs & performance

  • Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 for Galaxy chipset
  • 12GB RAM in all models
  • 256GB, 512GB, or 1TB storage

The Z Fold 5 is equipped with the same Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 for Galaxy processor as the Galaxy S23 Ultra and other S23 phones. On Geekbench, it clocked slightly lower than the Ultra, but the Galaxy Z Fold 5 performed nearly flawlessly.

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 benchmarks

Apps open and load rapidly owing to 12GB of storage across all models, and if you really want to spend over $2,000/£2,000 on a phone, you can buy up to 1TB of non-expandable storage.

5G, LTE, Wi-Fi 6E, and Bluetooth 5.3 provide connectivity. There’s also a dual nano-SIM slot and an eSIM slot.

The Z Fold 5’s cameras are subpar for a phone of this budget. They’re the worst part about it.

I wouldn’t say the same thing if they were on a $500/£500 phone, but given that the Fold costs at least $1,799.99/£1,744, they are simply unacceptable. The colors are dramatically oversaturated, especially the greens and blues of the sky and grass, giving most of the shots I took a neon splash of Barbie movie proportions.

The primary rear lens is a 50-megapixel f/1.8 sensor with optical image stabilisation (OIS). It created sharp, clear photographs that are ready to share on social media, but their brilliant tones are not always accurate.


I like the photos from Samsung’s more refined tuning on the Galaxy S23 Ultra, or even better, the Google Pixel 7 Pro, which has richer contrast and higher dynamic range.

Portrait mode is also a little shaky.

A 10Mp f/2.2 ultra-wide lens is also useful for shooting landscapes or hectic situations up close, although it falls short of the greatest smartphone cameras available.

The 10Mp f/2.4 telephoto camera with 3x optical zoom and OIS is ideal for punching into situations while keeping acceptable image quality. However, these cameras are no better than a very similar setup in 2021’s Z Fold 3. Here are three images of the same scenario seen via each rear lens:

You also get a nice 10MP selfie camera in a cutout in the outer display, and owing to the front screen, you can completely open the phone and use it as a viewfinder to snap a selfie with the back cameras.

Samsung’s insistence on a 4Mp under-display camera in the inner screen remains perplexing. When you’re not using it, pixels cover it up, but selfies on it are bad, and it should only be used for video calls.

Because of the huge viewfinder, I loved shooting and viewing video on the Fold, and it can take 8K film at 30fps (though neither of its displays can show it back at that quality). Things still seem excellent in regular full HD at 30fps, stabilisation is adequate, and colors aren’t as crazily saturated as they are in photographs.

Battery & charging

  • 4,400mAh battery
  • 25W charging is ‘slow’
  • Wireless and reverse wireless charging

The Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 is one of Qualcomm’s most balanced CPUs to date, with excellent power efficiency. This makes the Z Fold 5 a phone you can use all day without charging, albeit it won’t last two days. That’s understandable when you have two fantastic displays.

It scored a respectable 11 hours and 10 minutes in the PC Mark battery test, about an hour less than the S23 Ultra. In comparison to that phone’s 5,000mAh battery, the Z Fold 5 only has a 4,400mAh battery.

Because the package only includes a USB-C connector, you’ll need to purchase a 25W power brick if you want to charge at maximum speed. By current standards, that is sluggish, as it only charged to 28% in 15 minutes and 56% in 30 minutes for me.

You also get Qi wireless charging, and you can use reverse charging to wirelessly charge earphones or other compatible devices.

Galaxy Z Fold 5

Software & features

  • Android 13
  • One UI 5.1.1
  • Five years of software support

The software on the Z Fold 5 is fantastic, the finest available for a folding phone. You receive an optional but excellent taskbar that shows your favorite and most recently used programs, allowing you to instantly open them or switch to split screen mode.

You should limit yourself to two programs at most, however you can open apps in pop-up windows if necessary. I used the phone to text while watching videos and to make a video call while having a business chat open.

Galaxy Z Fold 5

As useful as this might be, I get the impression that book-style foldable phones are solving problems that only arise due of their inherent restrictions.

The Z Fold 5’s software is excellent, the best out there for a folding phone

Samsung’s One UI is nice, and you can make it as basic or as complex as you desire. The Fold initially arrives with Android 13, but will be upgraded to Android 17 in 2027. It will also receive security fixes until 2028, which is comforting to know when you’re paying this much money.

Unless you disable this option, the system will put apps into ‘deep sleep,’ which disables updates and notifications. This is something that Chinese manufacturers are frequently chastised for, but Samsung does it as well.

Better are features such as the Game Booster mode, which activates automatically when gaming to regulate functionality and performance. It’s encouraging to see Samsung acknowledge that the Z Fold 5 can and will be used for more than just productivity and work.

Galaxy Z Fold 5

Price & availability

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 costs from $1,799.99/£1,748 with 12GB RAM and 256GB storage.

A 256GB model costs $1,919.99/$1,849 and a 1TB model can be got for $2,159.99/£2,049 from Samsung’s website.


Despite competition from Google, Huawei, Vivo, and Xiaomi, the Galaxy Z Fold 5 remains the greatest book-style folding smartphone. Those businesses may have outperformed Samsung in terms of hardware, but the delight here is in the software. One user interface is far superior and more useful than any of its competitors.

If you can stomach the exorbitant asking price, you’ll be rewarded with a phone that has fantastic performance, all-day battery life, superb speakers, and, of course, a large foldable display that’s a joy to use.

However, if you despise the thinness of the outside screen or the device’s inescapable size, consider if a folding phone like this is right for you.


  • Unfolded: 129.9x 154.9 x 6.1mm
  • Folded: 67.1 x 154.9 x 13.4mm
  • 253g
  • 6.2in 120Hz AMOLED cover display (23.1:9)
  • 7.6in 120Hz AMOLED foldable internal display (21.6:18)
  • Gorilla Glass Victus 2 on front display and rear
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2
  • 12GB RAM
  • 256GB/512GB/1TB of UFS 4.0 storage
  • Rear cameras: 50Mp main f.1.8, 10Mp f/2.4 3x telephoto, 12Mp f/2.2 123-degree ultra-wide
  • 4Mp f/1.8 under-display camera
  • 10Mp f/2.2 cover camera
  • Up to 8K video recording
  • 4,400mAh battery with 25W charging
  • Side-mounted fingerprint scanner
  • Wi-Fi 6E
  • Bluetooth 5.3
  • 5G
  • NFC
  • Available in Icy Blue, Phantom Black, Cream, Grey, Blue
Achraf Grini
Achraf Grini
Hello This is AG. I am a Tech lover and I have long been a promoter and editor for a shopping company, I have followed smartphones and headphones and others. I covers iOS, Android, Windows and macOS, writing tutorials, buying guides and reviews.


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