Samsung Galaxy Z series gets even more innovative

Top: Users can customize the cover screen of the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4. Above: Split screen mode on the Samsung Galaxy Z [SAMSUNG ELECTRONICS]

 
The latest editions in the Galaxy Z series, Samsung Electronics’ newest foldable smartphones, are taking off globally.
 
Since first unveiled at Samsung’s Unpacked 2022 in August, the Galaxy Z Fold 4 and Galaxy Z Flip 4 recorded a total of 970,000 domestic preorders between Aug. 16 and 22. On average, 138,000 orders were placed every day throughout the first week, breaking Korean preorder records.  
 
The new Galaxy Z Flip 4 and Z Fold 4 are the fourth generation of Samsung’s foldable and flippable Z series, and the company says they represent more than simple technological innovation.  
 
“Samsung Galaxy foldables are manufactured based on the company’s foundation of openness philosophy,” said Roh Tae-mun, president and head of mobile communications business at Samsung Electronics. “The units enable users to encounter and access new possibilities and dynamic experiences based on the company’s accumulated technological assets and unwavering leadership.
 
“The new generation of the Galaxy Z models clearly depict the growing excitement for foldable smartphones and prove that we have successfully shifted a radical project into a mainstream device lineup.”
 
One of the most noticeable hardware improvements to the new devices is the updated hinge.  
 
While earlier versions of the Galaxy Z series broke new ground in foldable and flippable phone technology, Samsung was aware that it still needed to develop a more compact hinge to satisfy more mainstream users. The Galaxy Z Flip 4 and Z Fold 4 come with a slimmed-down hinge and straighter edges to provide a neater, more-compact device.  
 
By restructuring and optimizing the internal components, particularly the hinge and display screen, the new Galaxy Z series offer an ideal shape and weight for users who prioritize on-the-go usage of smartphones.  
 
“We reduced the number of components by 60 percent compared to our previous generations” said Roh.  
 
The reduction in the number of components frees up more space for new additions like the advanced camera system that features Samsung’s Nightography mode and bigger batteries.  
 
Samsung has been looking to improve battery life after receiving feedback from users of previous models and has enlarged the battery in the latest models to try and remedy this problem. What’s more, the internal changes made in the design lower the risk of mechanical issues and allow for easier large-scale manufacturing.  
 

 
The Galaxy Z Flip 4 is crafted to allow users to make the most out of its distinctive clamshell design, allowing users to do everything without even opening their phone.  
 
The device has a cover screen on the surface when folded. Using the cover screen, users can make calls, reply to texts, unlock vehicles linked to their smart applications and even access Samsung Wallet.  
 
The cover screen is also a tool of self-expression, allowing users to customize its design by coordinating clock designs and backgrounds available in various forms including images, GIFs and even videos.
 
The model can be opened in any position between 0 and 180 degrees and each format unlocks a range of features, maximizing personalized usage.  
 
When fully folded, users can enjoy the endless capacity of the cover screen in the most compact form a smartphone can have. By pressing the side button twice, users can activate Quick Shot to take a quick selfie.  
 
Open the device to about 75 degrees and users will enable FlexCam.  
 
FlexCam allows users to take pictures from completely new angles that work like an adjustable tripod. Taking flattering group pictures without having to awkwardly ask a stranger or activating cumbersome timers is possible with FlexCam.  
 
Opening the Z Flip4 to 90 degrees presents users with a versatile experience, switching between the two modes without having to halt in between. The phone can also be held like a camcorder, providing a firm grip for recording things in detail.  
 
The new Z Flip4 takes Flex mode to another level with an added touchpad. The touch pad functions like a mouse cursor to help users multitask.  
 

 
Samsung Electronics describes the Galaxy Z Fold 4 as a multitasking powerhouse.  
 
The new taskbar has a layout that resembles that of a PC, allowing quick and easy access to users’ favorite or recently used apps. Swipe gestures have been included in the “motion and gestures” settings to instantly change full screen apps into pop-up windows or split the screen in half for further multitasking.  
 
Samsung’s partnerships with Google and Microsoft allows users to multitask in a completely new way, enabling the drag-and-drop function of all Google applications including Chrome and Gmail.
 
Samsung has also worked hard to take broad steps toward the 2025 sustainability goals since Unpacked 2021. Under the company’s dominant vision “Galaxy for the Planet,” Samsung Electronics has made steadfast and steady movements, realizing their influence and responsibilities in adequately engaging sustainability and innovation.  
 
That goal is well reflected in the new foldable devices. Key initiatives include utilizing recycled material in the new products, designing eco-conscious packaging and scaling solutions that cut electronic waste.  
 
Samsung plans to further invest in research to develop the recycled materials incorporated in its products.  
 
Ghost nets, or fishing nets floating loose in the ocean, are a key recycled material used in Samsung’s products. The company’s articulate engineering and technical skills minimize the effects of plastic pollution while ensuring the safety and reliability of the materials incorporated in Samsung’s innovative technologies.  
 
Abandoned fishing nets, along with post-consumer materials and bio-based resins, have been included in roughly 90 percent of Galaxy devices launched since 2021. The company strives to increase the presence of recycled materials in its devices, including the new Z series.
 
The new Galaxy foldables will be packaged delivered to reflect the company’s goal to eliminate single-use plastics in product packaging.  
 
Samsung has committed to designing eco-friendly packages since the launch of the Galaxy S22 series. Flagship products are 100 percent wrapped in recycled paper, which is the equivalent to saving nearly 51,000 trees by the end of this year.  
 
Packaging volumes of Galaxy Z Flip4 and Galaxy Z Fold4 have been reduced by 52.8 percent and 58.2 percent respectively compared to first generation models. The company is also looking to minimize its environmental footprint in transporting the devices.  
 
“It is estimated that the decrease in packaging volume will deduct approximately 10,000 tons of carbon emissions from transportation by 2022,” said a Samsung official.  
 
Samsung Electronics has also been curating solutions to resolve electronic waste matters via the Galaxy Upcycling program.  
 
“Galaxy Upcycling at Home” is a simple way to revive older smartphones into smart home devices.  
Users can now completely transform their used electronics into childcare and petcare services by initiating a software update without having to leave the house.  
 
The company’s upcycling program goes beyond eco-consciousness and works to enhance the quality of life for all. Secondhand Galaxy devices are reshaped into Eyelike Fundus Cameras, which are medical diagnosis devices that offer adequate eye care services.  
 
So far the program has provided basic eye care for over 13,000 patients in underserved communities in Vietnam, Morocco, India and Papua New Guinea.
 

BY LEE HYEIN [lee.hyein@joongang.co.kr]



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