The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 has been my daily driver for a while now – and I love it. Unfolding it for a bigger screen always feels futuristic every time I do it. The cameras do the job, and it’s an amazing mobile device for productivity. But despite being the best of its kind, everything can be improved, and that’s also the case for the Galaxy Z Fold 3.
Here’s what I hope Samsung improves with the Galaxy Z Fold 4.
Wider coverage display…with a caveat
Front displays on foldables are meant to get things done quickly, without having to take the next step of unfolding the phone. For example, replying to that message on WhatsApp, checking the time, browsing notifications, and anything else that requires little effort. The Galaxy Z Fold 3 performs quick tasks on the thin 6.2-inch screen, unless I need to quickly type something on it.
Typing on the Galaxy Z Fold 3 cover screen is a tedious task. Due to the thinness of the screen, you don’t get the usable width on the keyboard, which leads to a lot of typos that end up frustrating me. Making the cover screen wider solves the typo problem, but also leads to a wider foldable screen.
From my experience with the Oppo Find N, this might not be a good idea despite the improved usability. The web is designed to work vertically. You scroll through things, whether it’s your Twitter feed, TikTok, Instagram Reels, reading on a browser, or anything else. Personally, I have yet to come across an application or web page where I prefer a larger aspect ratio to a larger one. I like the Fold 3’s taller aspect ratio rather than the Find N’s wider aspect ratio.
If Samsung could reduce the size of the left bezel on the cover screen and increase its width, while keeping the same dimensions as the Galaxy Z Fold 3, I’d be happy. Otherwise, I’ll just unfold the screen to type quick replies like I did.
Longer battery life and faster charging
The Fold 3’s battery life is above average, but not the best. If you push it to its limits or have a busy day without access to Wi-Fi, it will drain the battery before you go to bed. And unfortunately, fast charging support is limited to 25 watts.
With Chinese smartphone makers raising the bar for fast charging to a mind-boggling 120W, I hope to see the Galaxy Z Fold 4 offer up to 45W fast charging at least. I’m fine with a 4400mAh battery if I get support for fast charging which can get my phone from 10% to 60% in about 35 minutes. Samsung has already done this with the Galaxy S20 Ultra, so there’s no reason it can’t bring 45W fast charging support to the Galaxy Z Fold 4.
An upgrade to 11W fast wireless charging would also be much appreciated.
Make it lighter
The first thing you realize when you start using the Galaxy Z Fold 3 is its weight. Depending on how you hold the phone, your little finger may feel strain when using it bent for long periods of time. This shouldn’t be the case with any foldable. It’s happening! Use it this way.
A reduction from the current 271 grams would be a welcome change and would bring some relief to people’s little fingers. I had no major issues with the weight of my current Fold 3, but a lighter model would just feel better in the hands.
Better app optimization
This one has a lot more to do with Android app developers than Samsung, but the apps could definitely be optimized. And by app optimization, I don’t mean a full-screen Instagram (although you can do that in the Samsung Lab in Settings).
Apps like WhatsApp, which is used by billions of people, need to speed things up. On the Galaxy Z Fold 3, if I click on a photo in the app, it enlarges everything. The viewfinder does not give you an accurate estimate of what your shot will look like. Everything is enlarged and magnified, even during video calls! If the user on the other end holds the smartphone at the usual distance, you’ll see a cropped version on the foldable display.
Hopefully WhatsApp can release an update that fixes things, especially when its sister app – Instagram – has it all in the Stories section. Instagram stories do not crop or enlarge your image in the viewfinder.
There’s a good chance things will start to improve with Android 12L, but a lot still depends on app developers implementing these changes.
Foldable display stand without creases
The crease on the Fold 3 foldable display looks a lot like the notch on Apple devices – you stop noticing it after a while. However, it is still visible when there is a dark background, especially when reading something on the Kindle app, which is a common use case for me. Despite the fold sometimes bugging me, I love reading on the Fold 3.
On the other hand, the foldable screen of the Oppo Find N does not have a deep crease like the Fold, although this may change after long-term use. But out of the box, the Find N has a much more transparent foldable screen that looks and feels nicer to use. I just wish Samsung could find a way to minimize the crease to make my reading experience more enjoyable.
Best indoor UDC selfie shooter
When Samsung launched the 4MP Under-Display Camera (UDC) on the Fold 3, it was making a huge gamble by adding an innovative new feature while sacrificing usability. It’s nice to have a 7.6-inch screen without any cutouts to bother you and makes full-screen content more exciting.
However, the quality of selfies taken from the UDC isn’t great, as we noted in our review. Fortunately, Samsung is probably already working on a next-gen UDC with better image quality, and hopefully it will debut on the Galaxy Z Fold 4.
Built-in docking station for S-Pen
Samsung introduced S-Pen support capability from its Note line to the Galaxy S21 Ultra and Galaxy Z Fold 3. However, both missed out on a huge functional design feature that the Note had – a place to keep the S- Pen. If the Galaxy S22 Ultra renders are anything to go by, Samsung is already working on a place where you can insert the S Pen without having to shell out for a special case. This will make the S22 Ultra look much more like the presumably defunct Note series, while the Z Fold 4 could also get that slot and serve as a more efficient note-taking slate.
When will the Galaxy Z Fold 4 be launched?
The Galaxy Z Fold 4 has largely replaced the Galaxy Note lineup, which served as Samsung’s second flagship series lineup. Now, the Galaxy Z Fold 4 is expected to launch alongside the Galaxy Z Flip 4 towards the end of 2022.
- Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 review: The best foldable phone just got better
- Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2 review
- Oppo Find N vs Galaxy Z Fold 3: which foldable will win?
- Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 vs Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3: how deep are your pockets?
- Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 vs Galaxy Z Flip 3: what’s the difference?