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Samsung Z Fold 3 Impressions: The Good Gets Better!

Things I Like

  • IPX8 Water Resistance
  • Improved Displays
  • Durable Build
  • Under Display Camera

Potential Weakness

  • Under Display Camera Quality

Samsung recently unfolded the brand new Z Fold 3. It’s the 3rd entry in Samsung’s Z Fold lineup which brings a healthy dose of improvement upon its predecessor.

The Z Fold 3 price in Nepal starts at Rs. 2,19,999 and it is available for purchase via Samsung Plaza.

I had a chance to use this product for a day and I found it very exciting. Why? I’ll tell you all about it in this first impressions article of the Samsung Z Fold 3.

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 Specifications

  • Body: Unfolded: 159.2 x 128.2 x 6.9 mm, Folded: 159.2 x 68 x 16.8 mm, 282 g, Glass front (folded), plastic front (unfolded), glass back, aluminum frame
  • Protection: Gorilla Glass Victus (cover glass & rear panel)
  • Main Display: 7.6 inches Foldable Dynamic AMOLED 2X, 1768 x 2208 pixels (~373 ppi density), 120Hz refresh rate, HDR10+
  • Cover Display: 6.2 inches Super AMOLED, 832 x 2260 pixels (25:9), 120Hz
  • Chipset: Qualcomm SM8350 Snapdragon 888 5G (5 nm)
  • CPU: Octa-core (1×2.84 GHz Kryo 680 & 3×2.42 GHz Kryo 680 & 4×1.80 GHz Kryo 680)
  • GPU: Adreno 660
  • Memory: 12GB LPDDR5 RAM, 256/512GB UFS 3.1 storage, No Card Slot
  • OS: Android 11, One UI 3.1
  • Rear Camera: 12 MP, f/1.8, 26mm (wide), OIS
  • Front Camera: 4MP, Under-Display
  • Battery: Li-Po 4400 mAh, non-removable, Fast charging 25W, Fast wireless charging 11W, Reverse wireless charging 4.5W
  • USB: 3.1, Type-C 1.0 reversible connector
  • Misc: Fingerprint (side-mounted), accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass, barometer
  • Colors: Phantom Silver, Phantom Black, Phantom Green

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 Price in Nepal: Rs. 2,19,999 (12/256GB) | Rs. 2,29,999 (12/512GB)

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 Impressions

Improved Build + Water Resistance

  • Unfolded: 159.2 x 128.2 x 6.9 mm, Folded: 159.2 x 68 x 16.8 mm
  • 282 g
  • Dual SIM (Nano-SIM, dual stand-by)
  • IPX8 Rating

At a first glance, Samsung Z Fold 3 looks just like the Z Fold 2. But, it brings better materials and improved durability.

Samsung Z Fold 3 Design

First, the hinge is getting a much more durable Armored Aluminium which is supposed to be 10% stronger than the previous iteration. And, it definitely feels stronger and sturdy compared to the Z Fold 2. I folded and unfolded this device plenty of time and it did not feel flimsy at all.

On top of that, the Z Fold 3 is now IPX8 rated for water resistance and is the first water-resistant folding phone. To achieve this, Samsung has added rubbers and CIPG caskets on the hinge. This is definitely a very big deal for a folding phone.

ALSO READ: Samsung Galaxy F22 Review: A Decent Budget Phone with a High Refresh Rate

Moving on, the rear panel now has a pill-shaped rectangular camera module and the rear panel is also protected by Gorilla Glass Victus along with the Cover display.

Samsung Z Fold 3 Under Display Camera

On to one of the more drastic cosmetic changes, the Z Fold 3 has an under-display camera on the main display. The hole punch on the Z Fold 2 is now replaced by an under-display camera and I kind of support Samsung on this. However, it does bear some consequences which we will talk about in a later segment.

Durable Main Display

  • 7.6 inches Foldable Dynamic AMOLED 2X
  • 1768 x 2208 pixels (~373 ppi density)
  • 120Hz
  • Cover Display- 6.23 inches Dynamic AMOLED
  • 120Hz

The main display of the Samsung Z Fold 3 now has a 7.6 inches Dynamic AMOLED panel with a 120Hz refresh rate. Moreover, the display can switch between 10Hz and 120Hz depending upon the content. But the important thing is that Samsung is using its strongest and thinnest flex display with redesigned structure and more durable PET material.

Samsung Z Fold 3 Impressions
Samsung Z Fold 3 Main Display

Samsung claims that the Z Fold 3’s main display is 80% more durable than its predecessor. The display feels bright and punchy just like all of Samsung’s flagship phones. According to Samsung, the new display on the Z Fold 3 is 29% brighter and less power-hungry. At last, the Z Fold 3 also gets S Pen support. However, it only supports the new S Pen Pro or the S Pen Fold.

With the help of the under-display camera, it gets an interruptive display and it feels really good. The under-display camera is noticeable if you search for it. But, it feels natural most of the time.

You can also notice graining/pixelization in and around the under-display camera which looks more obvious with bright background colors. All in all, the under-display camera feels like the right choice for the Z Fold 3.

Samsung Z Fold 3 Impressions
Samsung Z Fold 3 Cover Display

Switching to the cover display, it is a much narrow 6.23 inch AMOLED panel with the same 120Hz refresh rate. But the cover display can only switch between 60Hz and 120Hz. The cover display also gets Gorilla Glass Victus protection.

Top-Notch Hardware

  • Qualcomm SM8350 Snapdragon 888 5G (5 nm)
  • Octa-core (1×2.84 GHz Kryo 680 & 3×2.42 GHz Kryo 680 & 4×1.80 GHz Kryo 680)
  • Adreno 660
  • 12GB LPDDR5 RAM, 256/512GB UFS 3.1 storage

Powering the Samsung Z Fold 3 is the Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 5G (5 nm) chipset. It is paired with 12GB LPDDR5 RAM and 256/512GB UFS 3.1 internal storage.

Well, I guess I don’t need to tell you much about the Snapdragon 888’s performance. The Z Fold 3 is super sleek and super smooth even when going from the cover display to the main display. For gaming and thermal performance, you will need to wait for our full review.

Dialed Down Camera Setup

Samsung Z Fold 3 doesn’t get Samsung’s full-blown flagship camera setup. It gets a trickled-down triple camera setup on the rear with a 12MP main sensor, a 12MP ultra-wide sensor, and a 12MP telephoto lens with 2X optical zoom.

samsung z fold 3 impressions
Samsung Z Fold 3 Camera

Likewise, it has a 4MP under-display camera and a 10MP camera on the cover display.

The photos from the main sensor look decent. I’ll have to test it out in detail for the full review.

Likewise, the photo quality from the 4MP under-display camera is not as good as the previous Fold. The photos have a bit of hazing and the phone actually runs a de-hazing algorithm right after taking the photo from the under-display camera.

Check out some of the sample shots for now. We’ll take about the camera quality in detail in our full review.

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Decent Battery

  • Non-removable Li-Po 4400mAh battery
  • Fast charging 25W
  • 11W Fast Wireless Charging
  • Reverse charging

In terms of battery, Samsung Z Fold 3 has a slightly smaller 4400mAh battery paired with a 25W fast charger. However, you won’t get a charger in the box.

samsung z fold 3 impressions
Samsung Z Fold 3 Battery

Furthermore, it also has 11W Fast Wireless Charging and 4.5W Reverse Wireless Charging support.

Software

  • Android 11
  • One UI 3.1.1

Samsung Z Fold 3 runs on One UI 3.1 on top of Android 11.

The Z Fold 3 runs on Android 11 with One UI 3.1.1. With the new Fold, the One UI also offers PC-style interactions for various apps such as messages.

ALSO READ: Samsung Mobiles Price in Nepal: Features and Specs

The camera UI also gets a new feature called Capture View that allows one to instantly view the images without opening the gallery. One of the more useful features is the ability to open 3 apps in split-screen view and up to 5 apps in the pop-up view. Likewise, it also gets all the S Pen features with the new S Pen Pro.

Follow Up

So, Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 is an iterative improvement of the Z Fold 2.

The IPX8 water resistance is a big thing for the new Fold along with the use of an under-display camera. For me, I think the sacrifice of selfie camera quality is justifiable for the use of an under-display camera.

If you want a better selfie, you already have a 10MP cover display camera and you can also use the rear camera as the selfie camera. So, I like the fact that Samsung has gone this route for Fold 3.

For now, I feel very positive about the Z Fold 3.

This is just an initial impressions article after a few hours of usage of the Z Fold 3. I’ll revisit what I talked about here in my full review.


Also, watch our impressions of the OnePlus Nord 2 in Nepali.


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