Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 announced with closed-hinge-gap and plenty of deja vu

An image of the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5
(Image credit: Samsung)

Samsung has officially lifted the lid on its 2023 book-style foldable, the Galaxy Z Fold 5, a similar-looking phone to the Z Fold 4, with modest updates including a closed-hinge-gap design, a lighter, slimmer body, updated internals, and an improved big-screen interface.

While the Z Fold 4 had very little competition when it launched in 2022, with Huawei being the only other phone maker selling big-screen foldables in the West, now, it's a different story. Honor dropped the lower-cost Magic Vs earlier in 2023, and the Google Pixel Fold is also taking the fight to Samsung with a periscope camera and Google's much-loved imaging system.

(Image credit: Samsung)

The closed-hinge gap design is the most noteworthy update to Samsung's new foldable phone. Samsung has historically made wedge-shaped foldables, and the opening at the hinge has allowed for dust to build up along the crease line. This year, thanks to a newly engineered hinge system, Samsung's been able to make its Flip and Fold close flat, bringing the Z Fold line on par with the Huawei Mate X3 and Oppo Find N2 on that front.

With a sturdy hinge and an armor aluminum frame, Samsung keeps durability in mind and brings back IPX8 water resistance. The phone's front and back are also protected by Gorilla Glass Victus 2 for added toughness.

Unlike any other foldable in the West, it also supports pen input on its main display, with the S Pen delivering up to 4,096 levels of pressure sensitivity.

The S Pen has also seen an update, with its case (sold separately) being slimmer than last year's and the pen being IP68 water-resistant.

(Image credit: Samsung)

The Z Fold 5's cover screen and main display are Dynamic AMOLED 2X panels with an adaptive refresh rate between 1-120Hz. Measuring 6.2 inches on the front, and 7.6 inches inside, the tall front display and almost-square inner display should give users plenty of flex when it comes to picking the best screen for whatever app they're running.

This year, Samsung's ramped up the brightness, with the Z Fold 5 able to climb up to 1200 nits in high brightness mode, and HDR content can beam as brightly as 1750 nits, so the contrast-level should look immense. That means movies should look immersive, and outdoor viewing performance is promising on-paper.

The Z Fold 5 has a 50MP main camera with an f/1.8 aperture and 1-micron pixels as well as OIS and dual-pixel autofocus. This is flanked by a 12MP ultra-wide (f/2.2) and a 10MP telephoto camera (f/2.4 with a 3x zoom and OIS).

If the Z Fold 5's camera sounds familiar, that's because it's the same setup introduced on the Z Fold 4 – a strong performer when it launched a year ago – but time will tell if it stacks up as well in 2023.

The Z Fold 5 also has two selfie cameras, a 10MP, f/2.2 module on the cover screen, and an under-display selfie camera inside, clocking in at 4MP with a wide f/1.8 lens.

(Image credit: Samsung)

A Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 for Galaxy chipset is behind the Z Fold 5's power, giving it a Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra-spec processor. The phone also has a larger graphite panel to help with cooling, and with 12GB RAM, it should be a multi-tasking, and gaming champion.

Like most foldables, the Z Fold 5's battery is slightly smaller than traditional smartphones at 4400mAh. Unlike most foldables, there is wireless charging on the Z Fold 5, and reverse wireless charging too.

Running Android with OneUI over the top, Samsung's also updated the interface experience with a card-style multi-tasking method, so you can swipe your main app in and out of your frame while you quickly access background apps.

(Image credit: Samsung)

Available in three storage capacities, the 256GB version costs $1,799/£1,749, the 512GB option costs $1,919/£1,849, and if you want a maxed-out 1TB Z Fold 5, it'll set you back $2,159/£2,049.

Samsung's also running a great offer on its foldables this year: pre-order on Samsung's official site and double your storage at no added cost.

So does the Z Fold 5 look like the book-style foldable of your dreams? We've gone hands-on with both phones, so be sure to check out our Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 and Z Fold 5 reviews, and if you want to know what other foldables are chomping at Samsung's heels, read our guide to the best flip and fold phones out now.

Interested in what else is in the flip and fold market? Check out our best flip phones and fold phones guide. Or if you are more interested in getting the best photos and videos from your mobile device, find out more in our guides to the best camera phone.

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Basil Kronfli

Basil Kronfli is a freelance technology journalist and content creator with a number of specialisms. He started his career at Canon Europe, before joining Phone Arena and Recombu as a tech writer and editor. From there, he headed up and runs Tech[edit], a technology YouTube channel, and has worked alongside this role at Future as a Senior Producer, sharpening his considerable video production skills. 

His technical expertise has been called on numerous times by mainstream media, with appearances and interviews on outlets like Sky News, and he provides Digital Camera World with insight and reviews on camera phones, video editing software and laptops, on-camera monitors, camera sliders, microphones and much more.