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The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 comes with some big improvements over its predecessor, including a larger external display, a much-improved hinge, and a faster processor. But the question is, is it enough? After all, for the first time ever, Samsung is facing real competition in the North American foldable space.

For now, it's going to have to be enough. The bigger screen makes it worth the upgrade on its own since it allows you to do more without the added step of opening it up, down to sending messages with an on-screen keyboard. Moreover, Samsung is still the most experienced player in the foldables market, so it continues to make the best foldable phones. It's had its issues, and it's learned from them to make a better product this time around. I'd have loved to see an upgraded camera, of course, but the Z Flip 5 continues to be a lifestyle product that doesn't focus quite as much on specs.

About this review: Samsung provided us with the Galaxy Z Flip 5 for review and did not have any input on the content.

New Project-17
Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5
One of the top two flip phones
7.5 / 10
$800 $1000 Save $200

The Galaxy Z Flip 5 brings a larger cover screen to the flip-style foldable, which might be exactly what you need. Despite packing a few other changes, it's still one of the best foldables you can buy.

Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 for Galaxy (4nm)
6.7-inch Full HD+ Dynamic AMOLED internal display with 120Hz refresh rate, 3.4-inch 720x748p external display
256GB, 512GB UFS 4.0
Operating System
Android 13 / One UI 5.1
Front camera
10MP selfie camera
Rear cameras
12MP f/1.8 main camera, 12MP f/2.2 ultrawide outside camera 10x digital zoom
5G, 4G LTE, Wi-Fi 6E, Bluetooth 5.3
3.35 x 2.83 x 0.59 inches (folded); 6.5 x 2.83 x 0.27 inches (unfolded)
Mint, Graphite, Cream, Lavender, Gray, Blue, Green, Yellow
6.6 ounces
Up to 50% in 30 minutes (25W wired), Wireless PowerShare
IP Rating
  • Compact form factor is great for people with small pockets
  • Bigger outside display makes a huge difference in usability
  • New hinge improves the form factor
  • The camera still needs work
  • No DeX

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5: Pricing and availability

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5-35

The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 starts at $999, and it's available at all the usual places. Carriers like AT&T, T-Mobile, and Verizon all have it, as do retailers like Amazon, Best Buy, and All units come with 8GB RAM, and the base model comes with 256GB UFS 4.0 storage. There's also a 512GB option that comes in at $1,199.

The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 comes in eight colors. First, we have Mint, Lavender, Cream, and Graphite. As usual, there are also some colors that are exclusive to Yellow, Blue, Green, and Gray. Those latter four colors come with a matte black bezel, which look pretty slick.


The new hinge makes a big difference

Samsung made some very key changes with the Galaxy Z Flip 5. The colors, the hinge, and the external display are all totally different, but it's super easy to look at this handset and say that not enough has changed. It's an interesting phenomenon because the changes that were made are really smart, practical, and useful.

Galaxy Z Flip 5 and Flip 4 side by side, showing the difference in hinge thickness
Left: Z Flip 5, Right: Z Flip 4
Left: Z Flip 5, Right: Z Flip 4

Let's start with the new hinge, which more or less lets the phone fold flat for the first time. It feels like such a small change, but when I pick up the Galaxy Z Flip 4 after daily driving the Flip 5 for a while, the Flip 4 feels prehistoric. I've also spent quite a bit of time with the Motorola Razr+, the Galaxy Z Flip 5's only competition in the U.S., and that also folds flat, so anything that doesn't feels dated at this point. That's right; you're reading about how smartphones with literal folding screens feel dated.

If you hold it up, you can still see daylight through it, but that's fine. The screens that fold flat are supported by raised bezels anyway. You can't have such a soft screen folded against itself. Imagine a piece of sand getting stuck in there. It's game over. And that is why you can't take the protective film off of foldable displays.

The hinge on the Z Flip 5 makes the Z Flip 4 feel prehistoric.

As you'd probably expect, the hinge isn't nearly as tight as it is on the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 or the Google Pixel Fold. It does feel a little tighter than the Motorola Razr+, but flip phones are designed to be looser so they can open with less resistance.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 in Mint color

This year's colors are pretty sweet. Samsung sent me the Mint one, which is the hero color and has a green-tinted frame. My favorite colors are the exclusive ones, though. They have this matte black frame that gives it a nice touch, and they're bolder.

Unfortunately, there's no Bespoke Edition this time around. While I'm sure costs were a factor in this decision, I was told that it's because colors are only on one side of the phone this time. There's one less element to mix and match with the larger screen on the front. That's fair enough, although I've always felt, as have others on the XDA team, that Bespoke succeeds where Motorola's beloved Moto Maker failed, and since Razr is the chief competitor to Galaxy Z Flip, it would've been a nice thing for Samsung to put out.


The cover display is all-new, and it adds new functionality

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 and Flip 4 with calendar open
Left: Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5, Right: Z Flip 4
Left: Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5, Right: Z Flip 4

While the internal screen is the same, the external screen is now 3.4 inches with a 720x748 resolution, and it makes a huge difference. When I first got my hands on the Galaxy Z Flip 4 last year, I actually dropped it within a few days of using it because if you try to open it one-handed and use it, you're taking that risk. These flip phones are not great for using one-handed. The Flip 4's external display lets you view simple widgets, interact with them in very limited ways, and of course, use it as a viewfinder when taking a selfie. You could use a third-party solution like CoverScreen to do more, but you were always limited by size.

However, the larger external display now makes it so you can actually do things with your phone without opening it. The new external screen is how a flip phone should feel.

The new cover display makes the Z Flip 5 feel like how a flip phone should feel.

By default, the widgets you'll find on the cover display include your calendar, weather, and Samsung Health. Then, you can also add widgets for phone, contacts, stocks, and more. While you can use an onscreen keyboard, it does have to be Samsung's own, at least for now.

Telegram screen with open Samsung keyboard

You're also not limited by Samsung's default options. If you head over to the Galaxy Store, the company has an app called Good Lock that gives you plenty more options, including a launcher that lets you run any app that you want. That's how I got Telegram running. There's also a game widget that lets you add select games to the cover screen.

And, of course, if the additional options provided by Good Lock aren't enough for you, there's always CoverScreen OS. Interestingly, CoverScreen OS seems to have a subscription fee to use new features for the Galaxy Z Flip 5, which I do not love.


Samsung needs to do better

View of the top half of the Galaxy Z Flip 5

For the Galaxy Z Flip 5, Samsung is using the exact same dual 12MP sensor configuration that it did with the Z Flip 4, which isn't great. Firstly, if you live your life with any kind of telephoto lens, you'll absolutely feel it when you give it up.

Second of all, this camera is fine — no more and no less. It's a regular old 12MP f/1.8 main sensor, and being from Samsung, you know it has the most features it could squeeze in. Either way, you're going to get one of the worst cameras you'll find on a thousand-dollar phone. But the camera is not what you're paying for. You're buying a specific kind of lifestyle device.

I think you'll find that the samples above don't provide anything exciting, nor should you expect them to. Low-light performance is pretty average, and anything using zoom immediately loses quality, but general shots are fine. If this phone didn't fold, you'd find this camera in something that costs a few hundred dollars. I will point out that in the first photo, the group selfie, it was weirdly blurry in the back. That was not shot in portrait mode.

I'm not going to go any deeper on the camera because that's just not what this phone is about. Feel free to scroll through the samples and decide if it's passable for you. Note that all selfies were taken with the rear camera while the phone was folded.


Or: The omission of DeX

A Galaxy Z Flip 5 in flex mode on a shelf

The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 packs a Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 for Galaxy, which is a slightly overclocked version of the regular Snapdragon 8 Gen 2. It's the same processor that's used in the Galaxy S23 series and, of course, the Galaxy Z Fold 5. However, Samsung only included 8GB RAM in the Flip 5, while the Fold 5 has 12GB. For comparison, last year's Galaxy Z Flip 4 and this year's Motorola Razr+ both use the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1.

And newer silicon is better, right? Sure, sort of. Just like the camera section above, you should not buy this phone because it has a Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 for Galaxy. You won't notice any kind of difference in performance for a few reasons, one of them being that Samsung really hasn't figured out thermals in flip-style foldables yet.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4

Motorola Razr+

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5

Geekbench 6 (single / multi)

2,016 / 5,081

1,806 / 4,505

1,847 / 4,559

2,095 / 5,533

AnTuTu (overall)










Based on Geekbench 6 and AnTuTu tests, there's a pretty clear boost from the newer processor. And indeed, Samsung also promises a slew of camera improvements thanks to the new ISP, although I suspect it wouldn't be hyping the ISP so much if it actually had new camera sensors. But I digress.

The battery benchmarks were tested with Generic Battery Drainer running with most settings turned on, meaning that the screen is at max brightness, it's constantly scanning for Wi-Fi, it's constantly scanning for Bluetooth, it's constantly making GPS requests, and it's under CPU and GPU load. The only setting I don't turn on is the flash. I use this test for comparison purposes, and I was a little surprised that the result was so similar to the Galaxy Z Flip 4, although maybe I shouldn't have been. As I mentioned earlier, despite some very key changes, this still feels like the same device.

View of the bottom of the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5, showing the USB port

One upgrade that flew under the radar is that the Galaxy Z Flip 5 is outfitted with USB 3.2, whereas previous generations had USB 2.0. It also now has a video out. What it doesn't have is DeX, Samsung's platform that lets you plug your phone into a screen and use it like a desktop. There are no technical limitations for the omission of DeX. The Korean firm could push out a software update tomorrow enabling it. However, I was told that it chooses not to do so because of the aforementioned thermal issues.

So, let's talk about throttling. The following results are from CPU Throttling Test, which was run for 30 minutes on each device. The results are measured in GIPS, or thousand instructions per second.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4

Motorola Razr+

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5

Max (GIPS)





Avg (GIPS)





Min (GIPS)





Percentage of max perf





Interestingly, you can see that the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 and Flip 4 both throttled much more than the other devices that were tested. And in fact, despite having a lesser processor, the Motorola Razr+ clearly has better-sustained performance. In fact, Motorola has its own Ready For platform, which does provide a desktop experience.

When you take this into consideration, it makes a lot more sense that Samsung doesn't include DeX on the Z Flip 5, but it does on the Z Fold 5. When the device is under load, and it's definitely under load when being used as a desktop, it's going to throttle. Throttling isn't just not an issue for the Galaxy Z Fold 5; it's actually pretty good.

In short, performance gets the job done for what you'll be using the Galaxy Z Flip 5 for. You can use it to play games, take pictures while you're out and about with friends, and so on. If you're worried about performance, just like with the camera, you should look at a slab phone.

Should you buy the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5?

Good Lock widget on Galaxy Z Flip 5

You should buy the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 if:

  • You have small pockets
  • You like small phones
  • You want a foldable phone because, frankly, they're cool

You should NOT buy the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 if:

  • You want excellent smartphone photography
  • You want high-end performance doing things like gaming or using DeX
  • You frequently use your phone one-handed

There's a reason that Samsung still has its Galaxy S lineup and it hasn't been taken over by foldables. There are still plenty of things that traditional handsets do better, and that will be the case for the foreseeable future. If you want the best smartphone camera, you still go for the Galaxy S23 Ultra. But foldables do have real benefits, and flip phones are the new small phones. Unfortunately, if you liked small phones because you use your phone one-handed, you're still out of luck. It's too much of a pain to open it one-handed and use it.

New Project-17
Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5
One of the top two flip phones
7.5 / 10
$800 $1000 Save $200

The Galaxy Z Flip 5 brings a larger cover screen to the flip-style foldable, which might be exactly what you need. Despite packing a few other changes, it's still one of the best foldables you can buy.