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Update | The Galaxy Z Flip may be more fragile than Samsung would like you to think

It could have gone better for the Z Flip at iFixit. (Source: YouTube)
It could have gone better for the Z Flip at iFixit. (Source: YouTube)
Samsung's second-generation foldable phone was launched along with claims that the OEM had made some strides in keeping this form-factor clear of potentially destructive dust and debris. A new video by teardown specialists iFixit may have called this marketing into question with a colorful experiment.

Update: During his Motorola Razr 2020 teardown video, JerryRigEverything's Zach Nelson addressed fan observations that the Galaxy Z Flip does in fact have a layer of fibers running along the entirety of the hinge internally, thus matching its promo images more closely. Therefore, those who bought this new foldable phone may now feel slightly better about giving Samsung their money. These components' performance in everyday dust-exclusion remains to be seen, however.

The excitement felt by potential Samsung Galaxy Fold customers at the launch of this ground-breaking foldable phone may have been matched by anxiety raised by subsequent reports asserting that grit and dust were more than capable of invading it. This issue was particularly prevalent around the hinge area of the device, and could mar the flexible display's appearance or functionality.

Samsung sought to address these concerns by engineering additional reinforcements around these points on the Fold when it was re-launched on the market following an overhaul of its design. Furthermore, it asserted that it had put even more work into its follow-up product, the Galaxy Z Flip. The most notable part of this process was the inclusion of "fibers" portrayed as running the length of this nouveau clamshell's own hinge in order to keep this component free of potentially harmful particles.

However, when iFixit went to test this marketing claim out, it appeared to fall on its face more than a bit. For a start, the YouTubers showed that this "dust-excluder" is only present at either end of the hinge on the Z Flip's teardown, a finding replicated during JerryRigEverything's dissembly of the same.

Furthermore, the former channel demonstrated the lack of efficacy of these "brushes" against exposure to flourescent purple powder. This hi-vis dust, with which the phone was treated prior to its teardown, also found its way into other parts of the phone such as the internals near its charging port. Therefore, this seems a total fail for the Z Flip's ingress-protection (well, as far as fine UV-reactive stuff goes, anyway).

In slightly more encouraging news, JerryRigEverything's host Zach Nelson was also able to conclude that the same phone does in fact incorporate ultra-thin glass. This was confirmed during an attempt to partially deconstruct the various layers of the Z Flip's display. On the other hand, the same material turned into tiny fragments during this process, which may reduce confidence in its durability. Oh well...at least it's not plastic.

The Galaxy Z Flip "fibers" are only found at either end of the hinge... (Source: YouTube)
The Galaxy Z Flip "fibers" are only found at either end of the hinge... (Source: YouTube)
...as confirmed by JerryRigEverything... (Source: YouTube)
...as confirmed by JerryRigEverything... (Source: YouTube)
iFixit's funky purple powder (brighter spots under this light) is visible within the Z Flip during its teardown... (Source: YouTube)
iFixit's funky purple powder (brighter spots under this light) is visible within the Z Flip during its teardown... (Source: YouTube)
...as well as in its backplate - and its hinge... (Source: YouTube)
...as well as in its backplate - and its hinge... (Source: YouTube)
...but hey, it has a cool mechanism, at least. (Source: YouTube)
...but hey, it has a cool mechanism, at least. (Source: YouTube)
JRE belatedly discovers the rest of the Galaxy Z Flip's dust-protection mechanism. (Source: YouTube)
JRE belatedly discovers the rest of the Galaxy Z Flip's dust-protection mechanism. (Source: YouTube)
 
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2020 02 > The Galaxy Z Flip may be more fragile than Samsung would like you to think
Deirdre O Donnell, 2020-02-27 (Update: 2020-02-27)
Deirdre O'Donnell
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.