Samsung's Galaxy Fold series may have gotten off to a rocky start, but after a relaunch to resolve the issues, and a follow-up with the Galaxy Z Fold 2, the foldable Z series is now one of the most desirable on the market, despite its heavy price tag.
Rumors and leaks are beginning to paint a picture of what we can expect from the Galaxy Z Fold 3, which is reported to boast and under display camera, as well as S-Pen support, like the Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra.
The smartphone may even ship with the stylus, incorporating it into its housing like the Galaxy Note series; and if what we've heard about the Galaxy Note 20 being the penultimate phone in the series is true, the Galaxy Z Fold 3 and its successors could replace the Note line going forward.
We'll keep you updated with all the latest on the Galaxy Z Fold 3 right here, so you can bookmark the page for the latest news! Now lets dive right in.
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Galaxy Z Fold 3: release date
While the Galaxy Fold 2 made its debut in September, 2020, the original Fold launched in April, 2019 before being taken off the market to address quality issues, and reappearing in September that year.
The Galaxy Z Fold 3 won't be following suit by the looks of things, with a June, 2021 release on the cards. This could be so that it lines up with MWC 2021 (Mobile World Congress).
The OG Fold was unveiled at the event in 2019, so Samsung wanting to use MWC as a backdrop for the reveal makes sense.
Galaxy Z Fold 3: price
We've not heard anything about the price yet, but if the Galaxy Z Fold 3 follows the same pricing structure as the Galaxy Z Fold 2, we expect it to start from $1,999 / £1,799 / AU$2,999.
That's a pretty steep price tag, but customers might find themselves forking over even more if rumors about the S-Pen are true. While the previous Galaxy Z Fold releases have features a single model, the rumor mill is suggesting we could see Galaxy Z Fold 3 Ultra model this year, which is purported to be the one of the two devices to support the S-Pen – much like Samsung did with Galaxy S21 series, with the Galaxy S21 Ultra being the only one to support the stylus.
If we do see a Galaxy Z Fold 3 Ultra, the price is reportedly going to be around $2,880 (approx. £2,120 / $AU3,790).
Taking into account these two factors, the cost of the foldable could skyrockets, but in the current climate, consumers could be reluctant to shell out even more money for an already expensive phone.
Galaxy Z Fold 3: display and design
We've heard all sorts about the design of the Galaxy Z Fold 3, from a form factor that's not too dissimilar to the Fold 2, to some really radical changes.
We've heard that the smartphone might take inspiration from its older Galaxy S Edge models by using the hinge to display notifications by way of an LED light strip. A change in color would denote an alert. It's a neat idea, but with a display panel on the front, it seems a touch redundant. Perhaps that particular patent won't come to pass.
A few other patents that have been spotted suggest that Samsung could be erring on the wild side when it comes to the Galaxy Z Fold 3 design. One patent shows off a dual-folding device (echoing the letter 'Z') with a pull-out physical keyboard which would be a hit with Blackberry fans.
The same design (sans keyboard) popped up again recently, in a Samsung blog of all places. A dual folding Galaxy Z Flip and Galaxy Fold device were amongst three unique foldables that could see Samsung take the Z series to a whole new level, and compete with the upcoming rollable Oppo x 2021 and LG's own rollable Project B smartphone.
We've also seen a much more sedated concept that sports the same design as the Galaxy Z Fold 2, although this one was pure speculation from a tipster, so we suggest you take all of them with a pinch of salt.
We may even see the removal of the holepunch camera if the Galaxy Z Fold 3 is the first Samsung device to launch with an under-display camera as rumored.
The most recent Galaxy Z Fold 3 render takes inspiration from the Galaxy S21 and Galaxy S21+, with similar camera housing, and shows off what the smartphone might look like in Samsung's new colorways. You can take a look at it in the video at the top of the page as well.
The Galaxy Z Fold 3 is reportedly going to sport a 7-inch main display with a 120Hz refresh rate, while the outer panel could shrink down to just 4-inches.
Galaxy Z Fold 3: specs and features
Not much has slipped out on the specs front, but Qualcomm's new Snapdragon 888 processor is undoubtedly going to be housed in the chassis.
The handset is going to need a beefy battery if it's supporting a front panel, as well as the main screen, and a possible LED strip. But if Samsung cuts down the size of the outer display, that should help alleviate the strain.
Galaxy Z Fold 3: other rumours and news
The Galaxy Z Fold 3 is rumored to offer S-Pen support and may even ship with the stylus. Making the panel compatible with the S-Pen tech will no doubt bump up the cost, and if the smartphone ships with the stylus, the cost will shoot up even more.
If Samsung is phasing out the Note series, it looks like Z Fold line is going to be its replacement.