I've recently started using a Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4 which, as anyone who has read T3's best foldable phones buying guide will know, is the folding handset we recommend for most people today in October 2022.
I'd written previously about how the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 had left me shocked after a couple of weeks of use, so I'd been dying to get my hands on the new folding phone hotness, the Z Flip 4, and see what it was like to use.
Well, after bagging Samsung's new compact foldable and testing it out, I've learned a few things that I think it would be good to pass on to others considering a folding phone purchase – and specifically a Galaxy Z Flip 4.
1. Ignore the haters, foldable phones are super cool
Ok, the first thing is that foldable phones, despite what the haters say, are in fact super cool.
In my mind, fully understanding that beauty is in the eye of the beholder, the Galaxy Z Flip 4 is an object of beauty, both aesthetically and ergonomically. It looks classy to me and feels like a premium piece of technology that is making my life just a little bit more joy-filled, which I think anybody would want.
Honestly, the amount of hate I've seen fired at foldables over the past few years has been totally over the top. Yes, sure, there were justifiable wobbles in the earliest foldable phones, such as the now infamous unreleased original Samsung Galaxy Fold. Still, today folding phones are technological marvels with few downsides, just like any of the best phones.
When I look at or use the Z Flip 4 it makes me feel better and, while the aesthetic novelty of the folding form factor may diminish, the classy design and will not.
2. And the compact form factor really is awesome
I think just how comfortable and convenient the folded-up, pocket-friendly form factor of the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4 is, has not been advertised enough.
Before using the Z Flip 4 I was using a Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Plus and, despite me still rating that handset highly, I was so tired of its pocket-breaking dimensions, which frequently made the phone painful or inconvenient to carry.
Going from a handset with a fixed 6.8-inch screen to one that is under half that when in folded form factor has made slipping the Z Flip into pockets and bags so much easier.
For example, I'm a mad keen motorcyclist and while before I had to store my Note 10 Plus in the bike's under-seat storage compartment as it wouldn't fit in my jacket pocket, now my phone does fit, and this typifies the added convenience.
I can then, with a simple flip, open the Galaxy foldable and get a 6.7-inch big screen experience. Elite.
3. This is flagship power and innovation
And, talking of elite, the Galaxy Z Flip 4 has flagship levels of power and performance.
That aforementioned 6.7-inch, 120Hz, HDR10+ AMOLED display is partnered with a rapid Qualcomm Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 4nm processor, as well as plenty of RAM and storage space.
Yes, the cameras aren't the best on the market, but they are powerful and the all-around camera system experience delivered is excellent, too. For all but expert photographers and camera enthusiasts, it will be more quality than they can actually make use of.
Oh, and the Z Flip 4 foldable also delivers 5G connection speeds, wireless and reverse wireless charging, AKG-tuned stereo speakers, Wi-Fi 6 support, and IPX8 water resistance.
So you not only get the latest innovation in terms of folding phone technology, but you also get specs and performance that match if not exceed non-folding flagship phones, too.
4. You're going to want a case, that's for sure
Within 24 hours of using the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4 I'd done what I strongly suggest every other owner of one does – order a protective case for it.
If you thought that non-folding phones were fragile and delicate objects that are easy to drop and break then, let me tell you, folding phones - and specifically compact foldables like the Galaxy Z Flip 4 - are even more so.
Shiny, smooth, and held together by an incredible complex hinge system made up of a billion parts, the Z Flip 4 is just one clumsy moment away from being a very expensive repair job, so my advice would be to get a case on it ASAP.
Luckily, there are a lot of cases to choose from right now, ranging from Samsung's own overpriced model to cheap but effective third-party models. I plumped for one of the latter, ordered from Amazon, and I think it looks great (see image above) and definitely increases the survivability of the phone if dropped.
5. The screen crease is visible but it doesn't matter
Can you see the screen crease on the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4? Yes and no, depending on what you're doing. Samsung has reduced the visibility of the crease in each iteration of the Flip and now it disappears cleverly, say, when watching videos or playing games.
Where it is more visible is when browsing social media or the Internet, or when the phone is in general not as bright. The general rule that I can see is that the brighter the screen the less visible the crease. So if you have the phone screen off and you look at it then the crease is most visible, while if you're watching the latest episode of She-Hulk: Attorney at Law then it is invisible.
The point is, for me at least, being able to slightly notice a screen depression doesn't make the Z Flip 4 any less fun to use or get in the way of any experience. It honestly doesn't matter. In future foldable phones if they can magic up a way to remove any sign of a crease in all applications then, obviously, great and I hope they do so. But it is in no way a deal breaker now.
6. Folding exclusive features are actually useful
You know something isn't just a gimmick when you find yourself using it frequently, and the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4's ability to use its foldable screen to allow you to easily prop it up anywhere to take selfie pictures or make video calls is one of those things.
Put the Z Flip 4 in an L-shape and you can remove the need for a mount, easily taking group selfies, WhatsApp video calls and, even, low-light long-exposure photographs, and the bottom part of the phone provides a rock-solid base to keep the optics steady.
If you're an influencer or just someone who likes to record themselves on-video, this is obviously a great phone for that, too.
That's functionality you only get on foldable phones and, for me at least, something that I now make use of every single week.