Royole Flexpai 2 foldable goes official with Snapdragon 865, fold flat design, other refinements
Chinese smartphone maker is back with its second-generation foldable device, the Flexpai 2. The device was officially launched today after popping up occasionally ahead of its formal unveiling. The device looks much more refined from both a hardware and software perspective while it also undercuts the foldable competition from Huawei and Samsung in terms of price. The company also makes some bold claims about the durability of its display that would set it well apart from both Huawei and Samsung claim for the Mate Xs and Galaxy Z Fold 2 respectively.
The Flexpai 2 features the company’s third-generation 'Cicada Wing' fully flexible display, which it claims has been certified to withstand repeated bending up to 1.8 million times. By way of comparison, Samsung claims that its Fold 2 can be folded 200,000 times. The main 7.8-inch display delivers a resolution of 1920 x 1440 pixels -- when folded outwards and around becomes a ‘main’ display of 5.5-inches in size with a resolution of 1440 x 900 pixels and a ‘rear’ display of 5.4-inches with a resolution of 1440 x 810 pixels. It also folds shut flat, which is something the that Galaxy X Fold 2 hasn't yet been able to pull off, although it folds inwards.
Next to the rear display can be found a quad-camera array with a look that is reminiscent of the Xiaomi Mi Mix Alpha concept smartphone set up. The main camera module is 64 MP with an f/1.89 aperture that is joined by a 16-megapixel f/2.2 ultra-wide camera, an 8-megapixel f/2.4 telephoto camera with 3x optical zoom and a 32-megapixel f/2.0 portrait camera. One of the advantages of Royole’s camera and display arrangement is that both the person taking a portrait photo and the subject can see what is being shot.
The Royole Flexpai 2 is not short on performance chops either. It is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 in RAM and storage combinations of 8 GB/256 GB and 12 GB/512 GB. The entry model is available for purchase right now in a choice of three colors from the Royole website for the equivalent of around US$1,470. When the top spec model goes on sale in the coming days it will retail for around US$1,710. This compares favorably with the Galaxy Z Fold 2 which retails for US$1,999 for the 12 GB/256 GB storage option.
The Royole Flexpai 2 also comes with a customized version of Android 10 installed that it has dubbed Water OS 2. This appears much more polished than the original Flexpai and is similar to the dual-display multitasking approach that Microsoft is pioneering with the Surface Duo. The first Flexpai was roundly criticized for its software, so it will be interesting to see if the critical response is better this time around.