Move over Samsung – this foldable phone just stole the show

The Honor Magic V2 has laid down the gauntlet – but can the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 do battle?

The Honor Magic V2 in a range of colours on a pink and blue background
(Image credit: Honor)

When you think of the best foldable phones, chances are you picture a Samsung device. They were among the first to launch the technology, and have continued to update their range with new technology.

Of course, heritage doesn't count for everything. While we're waiting for the updates to the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4 and the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4, leaked specs and rumours don't suggest they're going to reinvent the wheel.

Now, another brand has released a device – and it might just knock the Samsung off its perch. The Honor Magic V2 was unveiled in Beijing, and looks set to go toe-to-toe with the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 when it launches later this month.

On the face of it, the Honor looks like the far better handset. Let's start with the dimensions, which frankly defy belief. When folded, the Magic V2 measures just 9.9mm thick. Compare that to the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra – one of the more popular traditional Android phones on the market – which measures 8.9mm thick. 

Then there's the weight. At 231g, it's actually lighter than the S23 Ultra, and substantially less than Samsung's book-style foldable. That's partly down to the hinge, which is manufactured from titanium. The lightweight material allows the brand to shave off some grams, while also maintaining strength.

The displays are also strong. The internal folding display is a 7.92-inch OLED panel, with a 120Hz refresh rate. The cover display uses the same 120Hz OLED technology, this time with a 6.43-inch display. Crucially, that uses a 20:9 aspect ratio, which should make it feel much more familiar then the slim Samsung.

It's no slouch inside, either. The current top-spec Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 can be found there, which should match the chip powering the new Samsung devices. That's paired with 16GB of RAM and a choice of 256GB, 512GB or 1TB of storage. You'll also find a whopping-by-foldable-standards 5,000mAh battery inside. For context, the Z Fold 4 is packing a 4,400mAh unit.

Last, but by no means least, there's the camera array. 50MP sensors take care of wide and ultra-wide duties, while there's also a 20MP telephoto lens. There's no mention of the optical zoom on offer, though the site shows off images at 2.5x, 10x and 40x zoom. Based on the quality, I'd wager that the optical zoom ends at 2.5x, before a digital zoom takes over.

The only downside I can see right now, is that it's only on offer in China. I really hope it gets a wider release in the future, though. The market desperately needs challengers to drive innovation in new designs across the board. Its predecessor, the Honor Magic Vs arrived in the UK in May, so I remain hopeful.

Price-wise, the Magic V2 costs 8,999 RMB. Convert that directly to GBP and it's just shy of £1,000. That's unlikely to match the retail price though. The Magic Vs cost £1,399 in the UK, so I'd expect something closer to that, if it comes to market here.

Sam Cross
Staff Writer

Online news writer at, Sam has five years of experience in online and print journalism, with work featured in publications like Metro and Last Word on Sports. After years writing about music and football, Sam now turns his hand to bringing you news about new phones, smart home products, smart watches, laptops and TVs. Sam is a longtime fan and user of Apple products, including iPhones, MacBooks and Apple Watches.He’s also T3’s resident football expert, bringing you everything you need to know about the big games, including how to watch them. In his spare time, Sam is a keen guitarist, watch lover and (very) amateur golfer.