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Samsung debuts the Galaxy Z Fold3 as its first-gen under-display camera flagship

Samsung's latest flagship saga finally unfolds. (Source: Samsung)
Samsung's latest flagship saga finally unfolds. (Source: Samsung)
The Galaxy Z Fold3 has finally become official as the headline act of Samsung's latest Unpacked event. The ultra-premium device has premiered as the first one from this OEM with an under-display camera (UDC) for its main 7.6-inch Dynamic AMOLED 2x display. It also offers upgrades such as the Snapdragon 888 processor.

Samsung has presented an outlook full of confidence that foldables will soon join the mainstream alongside its latest Galaxy Z Fold3. This optimism is not hindered by the fact the new device is the first to rock a world-first "uninterrupted" flexing display. The camera that can hide under this panel is 4MP in resolution, and has a performance that was frankly glossed over during the freshly-completed August 11, 2021 show.

The OEM has paired its newly 120Hz Dynamic AMOLED panel with equally first-gen Eco2 technology for enhanced power-efficiency. Samsung claims the combination adds up to 29% "more brightness" (presumably compared to the Z Fold2's primary display), and that these gains even apply to the UDC sub-section due to an advanced pixel matrix developed for this area.

The Z Fold3 is also equipped with quad stereo speakers for "multi-dimensional" speakers to enhance content consumption using its main 7.6-inch display. Samsung also asserts that it has enhanced productivity on this new tablet-sized screen with One UI 3 for foldables.

This consists of a range of tweaks designed to improve the use and usability of apps, both alone and in various split-screen modes. For example, the Android skin's native Calendar's UI is now distributed across the larger-than-usual panel in a more efficient, effective way. In addition, the user can have up to 3 apps on the go (including one with an active video screen) at the same time, in order to compare and refer back to their contents in real time.

There are options such as pinning to a home-screen and favorites in Recents, which, as Samsung claims, makes the Z Fold3 feel more like a PC - or, possibly, the next-gen Galaxy Note that is no longer to be. On that note, the OEM has indeed prepared a matching S Pen for the new flexible phablet.

This stylus is indeed just for the Z Fold3, as it has a much-modified rubber tip so as to avoid screen damage while using this accessory. Samsung has also tackled precision and accuracy in writing or drawing through a system of dual pen-responsive display layers (complete with Wacom technology) connected to the same new EMR controller.

It allows for pen-input processing via newly-developed algorithms that also extrapolate contact with the display's "hinge" area, which is left out of this novel dual-layer coverage. Samsung claims that this has improved Galaxy Z Fold3 responses to its S Pen by 40%.

It also claims to have enhanced the durability of the entire panel by up to 80%, and has boosted the hinge's resistance to water-damage through a combination of tape, corrosion-resistant materials and long-lasting grease (which might also address creaking, who knows).

The Z Fold3 is also reinforced with new Armor Aluminum, which is apparently up to 10% stronger than conventional options, and with Gorilla Glass Victus for its 6.2-inch cover display. This chassis contains an arguably underwhelming 4,400mAh battery, which, moreover, charges at just 25W.

The latest Samsung foldable flagship's price has also finally been set in stone: it starts at US$1,799 for a SKU with 12GB of RAM and 256GB of internal storage, and can be pre-ordered from now. This price apparently includes a year of Samsung's Care+ service, which includes 1 free screen replacement during this period.

Samsung finally unveils the Z Fold3 in full. (Source: Samsung)
Samsung finally unveils the Z Fold3 in full. (Source: Samsung)

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Deirdre O'Donnell
Deirdre O'Donnell - Senior Tech Writer - 5109 articles published on Notebookcheck since 2018
I became a professional writer and editor shortly after graduation. My degrees are in biomedical sciences; however, they led to some experience in the biotech area, which convinced me of its potential to revolutionize our health, environment and lives in general. This developed into an all-consuming interest in more aspects of tech over time: I can never write enough on the latest electronics, gadgets and innovations. My other interests include imaging, astronomy, and streaming all the things. Oh, and coffee.
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2021 08 > Samsung debuts the Galaxy Z Fold3 as its first-gen under-display camera flagship
Deirdre O'Donnell, 2021-08-11 (Update: 2021-08-12)