The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 has the potential to be the first foldable to really break into the mainstream if some of the rumors regarding its pricing and improved durability hold true.
The Galaxy Z Flip 5G was a quick turnaround from the original Galaxy Z Flip and fixed some of the obvious shortcomings of the original, making it a true flagship phone. However, it wasn’t the revolutionary leap that the Galaxy Z Fold 2 was over the Galaxy Fold. The Galaxy Z Flip 3 might change that, the larger cover display has massive potential and water resistance could help sway users that feel like foldables are too fragile for daily use.
Some of this will come down to Samsung’s marketing, this phone should be viewed as the ideal version of what Apple tried to sell with the iPhone 12 mini. It’s a phone that easily fits in your pocket, but unlike the mini, you don’t have to give up the convenience of a big screen.
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We’ll have to wait and see how Samsung tries to shape its marketing for the Galaxy Z Flip 3, but in the meantime, we’ve gathered every leak and rumor along with our own research to bring you everything you need to know about the Galaxy Z Flip 3, including the expected release date, pricing, design, specs and more.
Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 release date
The Galaxy Z Flip 3 is going to launch at Galaxy Unpacked on August 11 alongside the Galaxy Z Fold 3 and the Galaxy Watch 4 series. Samsung itself confirmed that the third generation Galaxy Z Fold and Galaxy Z Flip will be announced at this event, so this one is now set in stone.
Galaxy UNPACKED 2021 August 11, 2021 10am EST Live on https://t.co/gKMSfQVZiQ pic.twitter.com/Dpwo4bBvAgJuly 3, 2021
Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 price
Much like the Galaxy Z Fold 3, one of the most anticipated updates for the Galaxy Z Flip 3 is its pricing. Rumors have suggested a drop ranging from 14 to 20% for the foldables, which would bring the Galaxy Z Flip 3 to a starting price between $1,160 and $1,1249. While that’s not pushing it into budget phone territory, it would be a welcome change from $1,449 for its predecessor and puts it on even footing with the starting price for high-end flagships like the Galaxy S21 Ultra or iPhone 12 Pro Max.
The more minimal price reduction again originated from leaker @FrontTron, suggesting a roughly 14% reduction to $1,249 for the Galaxy Z Flip 3. SamMobile on the other hand reported in June that its sources pointed to a 20% price drop for Samsung’s next-generation foldables, which would drop the Galaxy Z Flip 3 to around $1,160.
While it’s anyone’s guess which is correct at this point, the consensus that a price drop is coming for foldables is certainly welcome. Neither would be a surprise as Samsung slashed $200 off each of the Galaxy S21 models this year compared to their Galaxy S20 counterparts. That dollar amount would line up with the prediction from @FrontTron, while the percentage more closely matches up with SamMobile’s projection. Either way, it seems that we can look forward to more affordable foldables and pricing was our experts’ consensus on why foldables aren’t catching on.
Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 design
The Galaxy Z Flip 3 doesn’t appear to be in line for a major redesign, but even small changes could have a massive impact on usability. This includes addressing two of our biggest complaints about its predecessor, the tiny cover display and its lack of water resistance.
While it is certainly understandable that Samsung couldn’t deliver its foldables with an IP rating in the first or even second generation, it does make them a tougher sell to flagship phone buyers. We’ve become accustomed to an IP68 rating that means an accidental dip in a pool or lake won’t be an instant death sentence for their phone. SamMobile was the first to claim that the phone will have an IP rating and we've since seen confirmation of an IPX8 rating from leakers Max Weinbach and Evan Blass. While that would mean no added dust resistance, the phone should at a minimum handle 30 minutes submerged in at least 3 feet of water.
Turning to that postage stamp of a cover display on the Galaxy Z Flip 5G — and postage stamp is being generous — the Galaxy Z Flip 3 will jump to 1.9-inches from 1.1-inches. That may seem small, but it has the potential to be a game-changing update to the phone. The Z Flip 5G’s display isn’t useful for much more than checking the time. However, renders show full notifications on the new display. It would be large enough to use as a viewfinder for selfies taken with the phone’s rear cameras, a feature that is almost impossible to navigate properly on the Galaxy Z Flip 5G.
On a purely aesthetic front, renders have shown that the Galaxy Z Flip 3 will adopt a two-tone color scheme similar to what we have seen on the Pixel 6. The top of the phone with its dual rear cameras will be black on all variants with the lenses arranged vertically and the flash located below them. The rest of the body will be in one of four colors. These appear to be dark green, violet, beige and black. However, there’s some color shift in the renders making it difficult to discern the exact shades.
Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 specs
We would expect to see the Snapdragon 888 processor or possibly the Snapdragon 888 Plus and the Exynos 2100 (for international versions) in the Galaxy Z Flip 3. There have been no definitive rumors regarding this yet though.
According to SamMobile, the Galaxy Z Flip 3 could drop to 128GB of storage rather than the 256GB found in the current model, but there is also some talk of a Galaxy Z Flip 3 Lite or Galaxy Z Flip 3 FE model, which could open up a lower storage tier. Given the rumored price drop Samsung will likely stick to 8GB of RAM, that’s the minimum for a flagship Android phone in 2021, but it isn’t a problem.
Finally, the battery is rumored to remain roughly the same 3,330mAh as the Galaxy Z Flip 5G. And while that phone didn’t fare too well in our battery testing, real-world usage was not bad and there’s reason to believe that the Galaxy Z Flip 3 will be an improvement even with the same size battery. The key is that cover display, with a larger and more useful panel, you can offload more from the more power-hungry interior display.
Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 outlook
In my review of the Galaxy Z Flip 5G, I said that I thought it could be the blueprint for the small flagship phones of the future. The Galaxy Z Flip 3 may be ready to take on that mantle if people recognize its potential.
The iPhone 12 mini and to a lesser degree, the Asus Zenfone 8 delivered flagship specs in a more pocketable form factor. But the Galaxy Z Flip can bring even greater pocketability without sacrificing the big-screen experience that virtually everyone has come to appreciate.
Despite the rumored price drop, that is still likely to be the biggest hangup for potential buyers of this phone. Those pocketable phones I mentioned start at $699 and $599 respectively, right around half the cost of even the reduced price of the Galaxy Z Flip 3.
With that said, I do think we’ll see a somewhat substantial uptick for foldables this year for two key reasons. The first is the price drop. While it won’t be enough for everyone, it will help and of course, the inevitable sales mean the Galaxy Z Flip 3 will be $999 in time. The other huge factor is that foldables are something that users need to experience to appreciate. Seeing them in stores and in use by other people will win over new buyers.