Samsung Galaxy Unpacked 2023 News: Galaxy Z Flip And Fold 5, Galaxy Watch 6 And Tab S9
The Korean electronics giant is pushing foldable smartphones to new limits with the Galaxy Z Flip 5 and Galaxy Z Fold 5, which both come with an all-new hinge that allows the devices to fold completely flat. CRN gives a rundown of everything you need to know about the foldables as well as the new Galaxy Watch 6 and Galaxy Tab S9 series.
Samsung used its summer Galaxy Unpacked 2023 event to show how it’s pushing foldable smartphones to new limits while bringing significant improvements to tablets and smartwatches.
The Korean electronics giant on Tuesday revealed the latest versions of its two foldables: the horizontal-folding Galaxy Z Flip 5 that can fit in your pocket like an old flip phone and the vertical-folding Galaxy Z Fold 5 that has a tablet-like screen when you fold it open.
The company also disclosed the Galaxy Watch 6 series, which comes with a 20 percent larger screen and several new health features. It also showed off its new flagship tablet lineup, the Tab S9 series, which brings a new level of durability and performance not seen in previous products.
What follows are all the things you should know about the new Galaxy Z Flip 5, Galaxy Z Fold 5, Galaxy Watch 6 series and Galaxy Tab S9 series.
Galaxy Z Flip 5
Samsung’s Galaxy Z Flip 5 is the newest addition in the company’s lineup of smartphones that fold horizontally, and the headline features include a thinner design as well as a larger cover screen that allows users to do more things without opening the phone.
The Korean electronics giant is promising a “more comfortable feel in your pocket” due to an “all-new” Flex hinge that allows the Z Flip 5 to “close completely flat.” This gives the phone a depth of 50.1 millimeters when folded, which is slimmer than the Z Flip 4.
Samsung is calling the Z Flip 5 the “most durable” yet in the lineup thanks to the redesigned hinge’s “streamlined construction with fewer moving parts.”
The Z Flip 5’s cover screen is now called the Flex Window. Measuring at 3.4 inches, the screen is nearly 3.5 times bigger than its predecessor, and it uses the same Gorilla Glass Victus used by Samsung’s flagship Galaxy S23 smartphone lineup.
With the new Flex Window, Samsung said users can “easily access more than a dozen new widgets with many more to come.” This includes sending texts, making phone calls, checking the calendar as well as running apps like Google Maps and WhatsApp.
The Flex Window is “more intuitive” too, according to Samsung, giving users the ability to swipe up for quick access to things like credit cards, QR codes, identification cards; swipe down for quick settings; swipe right for notifications; and swipe left for favorite widgets.
Samsung said the Flex Window’s larger cover screen also creates an “even better Flex Cam experience,” giving users the ability to prop up their phone anywhere to take hands-free photos and videos.
The device’s main screen is 6.7 inches and comes with an 120Hz adaptive refresh rate and resolution of 2640 by 1080 pixels. The front camera is 10 megapixels while the rear dual camera consists of a 12-megapixel ultra-wide lens and a 12-megapixel wide-angle lens.
The Z Flip 5 is powered by the same Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 for Galaxy system-on-chip from Qualcomm that is used in Samsung’s Galaxy S23 series. And the base storage has been increased from the previous generation, from 128GB to 256GB. There will continue to be a 512GB option as well.
The device will be available on Aug. 11 starting at $999.99.
Galaxy Z Fold 5
Samsung’s Galaxy Z Fold 5 is the latest iteration in the company’s lineup of flagship smartphones that fold vertically, and the company says it will be a productivity and enterprise workhorse.
The Z Fold 5 is the “thinnest and lightest” device yet in the lineup yet, according to the Korean electronics giant. With a redesigned hinge, the phone “now folds completely flat, making it more comfortable in your hands or in your pocket,” the company said.
The device’s main screen is a 7.6-inch QXGA+ display with dynamic AMOLED 2x technology, a 120Hz adaptive refresh rate and a resolution of 2176 by 1812 pixels. At 1750 nits, the Z Fold 5 has the brightest Fold display yet, matching the brightness of the Galaxy S23 Ultra.
Samsung said it has made managing multiple windows “simpler and intuitive,” giving users the ability to run a variety of apps side by side. The refreshed interface also lets users drag images and text from one app using one hand and then open another app to drop them using the other hand.
The Z Fold 5 comes with the optional S Pen that provides a “superior writing experience” and comes with a case that is “nearly the same thickness as a regular case for the Fold,” Samsung said.
For photography, the foldable features several camera sensors. These sensors consist of a 10-megapixel selfie camera on the cover; a 4-megapixel camera under the display; a rear-dual camera with a 12-megapixel ultra-wide lens; and a real-triple camera with a 12-megapixel ultra-wide lens, a 50-megapixel wide-angle lens and a 10-megapixel telephoto lens.
Like other new flagship Galaxy devices, the Z Fold 5 is powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 for Galaxy system-on-chip. For memory, it supports configurations of 256GB, 512GB or 1TB.
The Z Fold 5 will be available on Aug. 11 starting at $1,799.99.
Galaxy Watch 6 Series
Samsung is giving smartwatch fans a big reason to upgrade with its new Galaxy Watch 6 series, which comes with a 20 percent larger display and a 30 percent smaller bezel than previous generations.
To commemorate the larger displays, the Galaxy Watch 6 series supported with an array of new watch faces that can match the Galaxy Z Flip 5’s Flex Window.
The Galaxy Watch 6 uses Samsung’s new One AI Watch 5 software for an updated interface that “makes it seamless and intuitive to personalize to personalize your watch,” according to the company. These improvements include the ability to create app folders and use custom colors.
The new smartwatches are powered by Google’s new Wear OS 4, which gets rid of the need to factory reset the watch when pairing to a new smartphone. The new operating system also comes with a new icon to indicate when the watch is using the microphone or GPS.
For health-focused users, Samsung is bringing some new and improved features around sleep, fitness and heart health. On the sleep side, there’s Sleep Score Factors, which provides an in-depth analysis of sleep patterns, as well as an enhanced version of Sleep Coaching that can automatically change the settings of smart home devices and turn on Sleep Mode across the watch and phone.
For fitness, the Galaxy Watch 6 series has a new feature called Body Composition, which offers a personalized fitness routine and nutritional tips that take into account things like skeletal muscle, basal metabolic rate, body water and body fat percentage.
New fitness-related features also include Personalized Heart Rate Zone, which defines five optimal running intensity levels based on the user’s physical capabilities and user-defined goals, such as burning fat or doing a high-intensity workout. In addition, the watches can record the distance run on a track and help users build and track a personalized workout routine.
As for heart-related matters, the Galaxy Watch 6 series introduces a new feature called Irregular Heart Rhythm Notification, which alerts users if they have symptoms indicated of atrial fibrillation.
Other new health features include menstrual cycle tracking and fall detection.
The Galaxy Watch 6 series comes with the new Samsung Wallet, which combines Samsung Pay and Samsung Pass to provide users with easy access to credit cards and membership cards as well as identification cards, event tickets and boarding passes.
When paired with the new Galaxy Z Flip 5, the Galaxy Watch 6 can remotely control the smartphone’s camera to zoom and switch modes.
The Galaxy Watch 6 series will be available in four models: the Galaxy Watch 6 Small will be available in graphite and gold and start at $299.99, the Galaxy Watch 6 Large will be available in graphite and silver and start at $329.99, the Galaxy Watch 6 Classic will be available in black and silver and start at $399.99, and the Galaxy Watch 6 Classic Small will be available in the same colors and start at $429.99.
Galaxy Tab S9 Series
Samsung said it’s “redefining the tablet landscape” with the new Galaxy Tab S9 series, which consists of the 11-inch Galaxy Tab S9, the 12.4-inch S9+ and the 14.6-inch S9 Ultra.
The Tab S9 series is the first Samsung tablet lineup where all devices use a dynamic AMOLED 2x display, according to the company. The tablets also for the first time make the use of Vision Booster, which “uses an intelligent algorithm to automatically detect ambient light conditions” to optimize screen settings.
The tablets come with 20 percent larger quad speakers that are tuned by AKG and paired with Dolby Atmos technology, allowing the devices to produce “immersive and spacious audio.”
Samsung said the Tab S9 tablets are the most durable devices in the lineup yet. The tablets are dust- and water-resistant, which earned them, along with the included S Pen, the same IP68 rating that has been given to the company’s rugged tablets. They also use Samsung’s proprietary Armor Aluminum.
The Tab S9 tablets are powered by the same Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 for Galaxy system-on-chip from Qualcomm that powers the new Galaxy Z Flip 5 and Galaxy Z Fold 5 as well as the Galaxy S23 Series. Combined with advanced vapor chamber technology, the SoC is capable to delivering high performance for long gaming, streaming or video editing sessions.
The new S Pen experience comes with several improvements, including lower latency and a better-feeling side button. The Tab S9 Series comes with expanded handwriting recognition, allowing users to use to S Pen to write in the search bar, in browsers and in app stores.
The Tab S9 Series more ways to arrange apps between the ability to arrange up to three apps as an organized grid and the ability to view apps as floating windows over the home screen.
Samsung said the new tablets can also “simulate a desktop experience” with the Tab S9 Series’ Book Cover Keyboard and DeX Mode, the latter of which emulates the interface of a PC. The tablets also support the ability to become the second screen of a PC.
The Tab S9 comes with either 8GB or 12GB in memory and 128GB or 256GB in storage. The Tab S9+ comes with 8GB in memory and either 256GB or 512GB in storage. The Tab S9 Ultra has two 12GB memory models that come with either 256GB or 512GB in storage, and there’s a 16GB memory model that has 1TB in storage. All models support a microSD card of up to 1TB.
With availability slated for Aug. 11, the Tab S9 starts at $799, the Tab S9+ starts at $999.99, a 5G-connected version of the Tab S9+ starts at $1,149.99, and the Tab S9 Ultra starts at $1,199.99.