The only thing we’re really unsure of is whether it’ll be called the Z Flip 2 or the Z Flip 3, with leakers predicting that Samsung might skip 2 to bring the numbering in line with the Folds.
When will the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 2 be released?
According to Korean site Digital Daily, a Samsung spokesperson has confirmed that the next Galaxy Unpacked event will take place on 11 August – and that’s when we expect to see the Z Flip 3.
We haven’t seen Samsung confirm the date on any of its public channels, but we’d previously heard the 11th as a possible launch date from leaker FrontTron.
Previously the likes of Max Weinbach and Jon Prosser had pegged 3 August as the date of the launch event, but this now seems unlikely. Prosser also says that mass production is now underway, with 50,000-70,000 handsets being produced every single day, and that the devices will officially go on sale on 27 August.
For reference, the original Galaxy Z Flip was announced on 14 February 2020 at the first Samsung Unpacked event of the year. It was later joined by the Z Flip 5G, in July 2020 – so an August announcement would be almost a year on from that, and set Samsung up for a cleaner annual release cycle.
The next Z Flip is expected to launch alongside the Galaxy Z Fold 3 and the new Galaxy Watch 4 series. We’d previously expected to see the Galaxy S21 FE launch alongside them, but it’s now rumoured to be delayed – so may instead appear together with the Galaxy Tab S8.
Remember that there won’t be a Note 21 this year, with Samsung putting that flagship line on pause for now at least. And if you’re hoping to see the rumoured Galaxy Z Fold Scroll, don’t expect to see that until 2022 at the earliest.
Will it be called the Z Flip 2 or Z Flip 3?
The name of the next Z Flip has been curiously contentious.
With that in mind you’d expect the next phone to be called the Z Flip 2, but numerous tipsters have claimed that it will in fact be called the Z Flip 3. This is likely as much to reflect the 5G version being iteration two as it is to bring the Flip numbering in line with the Galaxy Fold line, so that it doesn’t appear to be older tech.
The Flip 3 name looks increasingly likely, but for now we still can’t call it with any certainty.
How much will the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 2/3 cost?
Ice Universe initially posted a few details surrounding the next Z Flip on Chinese social media site Weibo and claimed that this device will be “cheaper” than its predecessors. The original Galaxy Z Flip cost £1,300/$1,380 and the Galaxy Z Flip 5G moved up to £1,399/$1,449.
This theory has since been compounded by a report from display technology experts DSCC. Published on 7 December 2020, the report – written by Ross Young – states that “expectations for the Z Flip 3, Z Fold 3 and a 3rd foldable expected by Samsung to hit the lowest price points yet.”
SamMobile gets more specific, reporting that the phone will be up to 20% cheaper than the previous model. That would be around £1,100/$1,150 based on the Z Flip 5G’s launch pricing.
@FrontTron, who tipped the 3 August release date, also pointed to a price range: $999-$1,199. He later amended that prediction in early July, pointing to a price of $1,249 for the 8GB/256GB model of the phone – not quite the rumoured 20% reduction, but still $200 cheaper than the previous generation.
That “3rd foldable” mentioned by Young above, by the way, is now thought to be the Galaxy Z Flip 3 Lite. The Korea Herald reports that this will be “a mass-market model with a more affordable price tag,” though we’re not sure how much cheaper it would be. We haven’t heard anything else about this model though, with no spec leaks to speak of, so we’re a little sceptical that it really is on the way.
What to expect from the Galaxy Z Flip 2/3
Rumours about improved specs are a bit thin on the ground at the time of writing, but thanks to leaked images we do at least have a sense of what the next Z Flip will look like.
Our best look yet at the Z Flip 3 comes via prolific leaker Evan Blass, who shared this allegedly official promo image of the new foldable together with the upcoming Z Fold 3.
Blass has since followed up with video renders of the Z Flip 3 in its four known colours, showing the phone from every angle. Note that these are most likely made by Blass, and he doesn’t claim that they’re official Samsung renders, but they match everything else we know about the phone so far. Click through to his Twitter post to see clips of the other colours.
Galaxy Z Flip3 5G pic.twitter.com/elWdV6uLuc
— Evan Blass (@evleaks) June 30, 2021
If you don’t mind the annoying watermark, there’s also a great look at the phone from GizNext, which managed to source what seem to be official Samsung renders of the phone in all four official colours. Here’s one image, but click through to the site to check out more.
These leaks are a very close match to older shots from what appears to be internal Samsung documentation, courtesy of Ice Universe on Weibo, adding to the sense that this is the genuine and final design of the phone.
Between these images and a prior leak from SamMobile, and a subsequent one from IceUniverse, we know that the Z Flip 3 will launch with a selection of new colours: light violet, green, black and beige.
Perhaps more important is that larger external display – reported to be 1.9in – seemingly now capable of displaying full notifications and messages, though the internal display is tipped to stay the same at 6.7in.
The original Z Flip and Z Flip 5G have a 1.1in display on the outside. While this provides a handy reference for the time, date, battery levels and offers basic touch control for music playback, a larger panel would make the feature more usable.
The Vietnamese tipster Chun is one of the industry experts who’s specifically claimed that a larger external display is on the way, alongside other upgrades:
As of now (September 2020)
– bigger outer display
– new UTG
– Upgraded hinge
– bigger battery
A bit concerned:
– high refresh rate display
– specs (screen size, chipset, cam)
— Chun (@chunvn8888) September 16, 2020
This suggests that Samsung will indeed increase the outer panel size, improve the casing itself along with a stiffer hinge, plus a larger battery will make it a more robust option when away from power sources.
The original Weibo post from Ice Universe mentioned a couple of other potential hardware details; namely a 120Hz high refresh rate display and a narrower frame than the existing Flip entries, and he later added on Twitter that the phone will weigh 183g – the exact same as the Z Flip 5G.
That narrower frame apparently includes a bezel that’s less than 3.8mm, shown off here in some renders that highlight the difference compared to the original model. It’s…subtle, to be fair. But hey, a slimmer bezel is no bad thing, even if it’s not changed by much.
Galaxy Z Flip3 <3.8mm bezel pic.twitter.com/ekGHx8Aq6r
— Ice universe (@UniverseIce) June 2, 2021
SamMobile also points to an IP rating for the phone – the first for a Samsung foldable – which leaker Chun corroborated, adding that he believes it will be an IP53 rating, rather than the stronger IP68 rating found on flagships like the S21 Ultra.
As for the internals, less is known here. We had expected that the Z Flip 2/3 would use Qualcomm’s newest flagship Snapdragon 888 chipset, but this has since been cast into doubt.
As reported by GalaxyClub.nl, a device believed to be the next Z Flip with the model number ‘SM-F720F’ was spotted, with the ‘F’ indicating that it’s both a device destined for the international market and that it’s a 4G/LTE device, rather than a 5G-capable handset – which would have a ‘B’ at the end of its name based on existing Samsung convention.
The Snapdragon 888 has integrated 5G, so if the phone has both 5G and 4G versions then it likely wouldn’t use this chip for either. Still, it could use the relatively recent Snapdragon 865+ or intermediary Snapdragon 870, both of which can be used with or without a 5G modem. It’s also possible that Samsung will use the 888 in a 5G model and a different chip – even one of its own Exynos chips – for the 4G variant.
Complicating things, a more recent report from SamMobile points to a different model number, SM-F711, though doesn’t specify either an ‘F’ or ‘B’ suffix. This may represent the Chinese version of the handset though, with a different model number for the global release.
The SamMobile report further claims that the phone will ship with a choice of 128GB or 256GB storage, and run Android 11 and OneUI 3.5 – another indication of a late 2021 launch, since that software version is expected to arrive in late summer, when the Galaxy Note 21 would have launched, though we now know that phone has been scrapped.
For reference, the original Z Flip sported the model number SM-F700, while the Z Flip 5G used SM-F707.
The SM-F711 model number pops up again on China’s 3C certification system, revealing that at least in that market the phone will ship with the same 15W charger as the previous Z Flip models. That suggests the same maximum charging capacity, though it is possible, albeit unlikely, that the phone will be capable of faster charging than the charger it ships with.
The battery may also be similar. Battery certification listings reveal a two-cell battery setup for the next Z Flip, with the same total capacity – 3300mAh – as the two previous models. Hopefully, power optimisations elsewhere will help that battery last a bit longer instead.
We discussed the latest rumours surrounding the next Galaxy Z Flip in our weekly podcast, Fast Charge:
Obviously, this is all unconfirmed, so we’ll keep checking on news and leaks, and report them back here as more about the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 2/3 comes to light. Until then, take a look at our guide to the best new phones coming in this year to see what else might be the breakthrough device in the months ahead.