Top foldable phones: Galaxy Z Flip, Motorola Razr, Huawei Mate X and more
Although Samsung’s newestfoldable phone is , you’ll be hard pressed to nab a device of your own due to it . But the Z Flip isn’t the only foldable device around. Motorola also launched one by rebooting its iconic . Not only do both phones have a foldable screen but they also have slim, compact bodies — a radical departure from the big-screen foldable phones we’ve seen prior, such as the and .
mobile apps take advantage of different display sizes. All of this will develop with the help of Google too, which has committed to providing for foldable designs. (Given some of its recent patent filings, it may even release a foldable phone of its own.)over the next five years, along with . In addition to Motorola, Samsung and Huawei, other phone makers have either announced or are rumored to have one in the works. These foldable phones will just hint at what’s to come, as the devices become thinner, do a better job of managing battery life and let
In short, prepare to see more foldable phones in the near future. Here are the brands that have announced plans, filed for a patent or are rumored to be joining the foldable craze.
Samsung Galaxy Z Flip and Fold: Available now
Available for $1,380 and £1,300 (about AU$2,500), the Galaxy Z Flip features a clamshell design, a 6.7-inch display and dual 12-megapixel rear cameras. It is the company’s second foldable phone after the $2,000. That phone features a secondary 4.6-inch display that serves as its “cover.” When you’re ready for something bigger, the Fold opens up like a book to a 7.3-inch tablet. The Fold also has six cameras. On the back, there’s a and on the front a single 10-megapixel camera. In tablet form, there are two additional cameras inside: a selfie camera and an 8-megapixel depth camera.
The Z Flip and Fold may not be the only two foldable phones from Samsung. The company is said to be developing Bloomberg. Citing people familiar with the company’s plans, Bloomberg reported that the other one may fold inward instead of outward like the Fold., according to
Motorola Razr: Available now
The Motorola Razr is available on US carrier Verizon for $1,499 (about £1,170 or AU$2,185 converted). Based on the original 2004 device (whichfor its , thin profile and various color options at the time), the 2020 Razr has a nostalgia-inducing “flip” phone design, a 6.2-inch screen, Android 9, a 16-megapixel camera and a fingerprint reader.
Huawei Mate X: Available now in China only
Jumping on the trends of foldable phones and 5G, Huawei’s’shas both. It has a 6.6-inch display when folded closed and an 8-inch OLED screen when you flip it open. And it features 5G connectivity that’s said to be four times faster than 4G, a 4,500-mAh battery and three rear cameras.
After a delayed launch, the phone was finally released in October 2019, MWC 2019 keynote back when Huawei first announced the phone, the company may be on the way.. Similar to the Galaxy Fold, which launched around the same time, the Mate X is very pricey at 2,299 euros, or about $2,600, £2,000 or AU$3,660. However, at its
Due tofrom the US government, it is unlikely that the Mate X will ever come to the US. Huawei remains the world’s top telecom supplier, however, and its devices are still available in more than 170 countries around the world, .
Royole FlexPai 2: Confirmed
Royale, a startup headquartered in Fremont, California, planned to announced the successor of its firstat MWC 2020. However, due to health concerns of the , and the future of the FlexPai 2 is up in the air.
The originalhad a 7.8-inch AMOLED screen, ran an OS called Water that was layered on top of Android 9 and featured two cameras. It started at $1,318 and £1,209 (about AU$2,180 converted) and when we first got our hands on it. However, because it was one of the first foldable phones announced, it gave us an early glimpse of what the future of .
TCL: Confirmed, expected in 2020
Mostly known for its affordable televisions, Chinese tech company TCL is working on , which include two tablets (one of which !), and a cufflike phone you wear around your wrist. Despite it not being a household name in the US, you may know TCL better through other brands it owns, namely BlackBerry, Alcatel and Palm.
The upcoming devices all have flexble AMOLED displays that can bend because of what TCL calls a. Patented by the company, the hinge enables the screens to fold both inward and outward. TCL estimates that its first foldable phone will be available in 2020 and that it could cost less than $1,000 — making it significantly cheaper than the Motorola Razr and both foldable Galaxy phones.
Xiaomi Dual Flex or Mix Flex: Confirmed
In January 2019, Chinese phone maker Xiaomi introduced itson the social media platform Weibo. Unlike other phones we’ve seen, which have only one bend down the middle, Xiaomi’s phone folds down into thirds, with both sides folding down.
Xiaomi co-founder and President Bin Lin said this design is “practical and beautiful” and that it “perfectly merges the experience of a tablet and a phone.” Specs and pricing information weren’t given, but Xiaomi is currently taking votes on two possible names: the Dual Flex or the Mix Flex.
Nubia Alpha: Available now
Nubia, an associate company of Chinese phone-maker ZTE, took the concept of a foldable phone one step further with its . The device launched at $449 (£360 and AU$643, converted), but has now been discounted for $299. It’s unique in that it’s a phone that wraps around a user’s wrist, similar to a smartwatch. It features a flexible 4.01-inch display, gesture controls and a water-resistant design. Its 5-megapixel camera can also record 10-second videos. However, it’s missing a lot of app support and it doesn’t have Instagram, Google Maps or an internet browser.
This isn’t the first time we’ve seen a phone that looks like the Alpha. In 2016, Lenovo had a concept device called the , which had a 4.26-inch display that you bent over your wrist. Unlike the CPlus, the Alpha is a real device you can get now.
Apple: Rumored, with patent application
In February, Applefor a clamshell phone with a foldable display and body. The filings have been ongoing since Apple’s first one nine years ago, in 2011. Since then, rumors of a flexible iPhone reignite with every new updated document — filed in , and and .
According to the newest filings, the patent is for “electronic devices with flexible displays and hinges.” But in keeping with its usual style, Apple has remained mum on details. So far, nothing has come to fruition with any of these patents in the public eye, and there hasn’t been any info on what this device might be (and if it will even be a phone at all) or a timeline for when to expect such products.
Google: Prototyping, with patent application
Back in December 2018, tech giant. The patent is for a “foldable display of a computing device and includes a back stiffening layer, a transparent front-plate layer, a transparent cover window layer and an OLED display layer disposed between the back stiffening layer and the transparent frontplate layer.”
Fast-forward later to May 2019 when Google then confirmed that it’s been, but didn’t see a clear use case for foldable screens yet. In addition, Google supports foldable phones with its to develop the technology from the software side as well.
Lenovo: Rumored, with patent application
As mentioned before, in 2016, Lenovo introduced the, which could bend and wrap around your wrist like the Nubia Alpha. While it was just a concept phone back then, Lenovo seems to have been making progress toward releasing a real foldable phone to the masses. In July 2018 it for a “portable information device” with a “foldable configuration.”
LG doesn’t have any foldable phones to announce yet, but we do know it’s interested in the design. So far it released three phones that come with a: the , the and the .
Unfortunately, neither of these phones are flexible. Back in 2014, LG did launch the LG would introduce a flexible phone, but that turned out to be a false alarm. Instead, it showed off a that later went on sale., a phone with a curved screen. There were at that
We know that, and the company is said to be working on one. But for now, these two-screen accessories will have to do.
Originally published Jan. 28, 2019 and updated with new information.