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Samsung Galaxy Z Fold2: A head-to-toe improvement

An expected refinement

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When the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold2 was first unveiled at the Galaxy Note 20 series Unpacked event we barely knew anything about the device. Now, Samsung has completely revealed everything.

As expected, this is a refinement of the first generation Galaxy Fold. Curiously, Samsung is calling it their third generation folding device following the Galaxy Fold and the Galaxy Z Flip.

Here’s what’s under the hood: 

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold2

Main Display 7.6” QXGA+ Dynamic AMOLED 2X Display (22.5:18) Infinity Flex Display (2208 x 1768), 373ppi
Cover Screen 6.2” HD+ Super AMOLED Display (25:9), 2260 x 816, 386ppi
Cover Camera 10MP Selfie Camera : F2.2, Pixel size: 1.22μm, FOV: 80 ̊
Front Camera
Rear Triple Camera 12MP Ultra Wide Camera : F2.2 ,Pixel size: 1.12μm, FOV : 123 ̊

12MP Wide-angle Camera : Super Speed Dual Pixel AF, OIS, F1.8, Pixel size: 1.8μm, FOV: 83 ̊

12MP Telephoto Camera : PDAF, F2.4, OIS, Pixel size: 1.0μm, FOV: 45 ̊

RAM and Storage 12GB RAM with 256GB internal storage (UFS3.1)
Battery 4500mAh (typical) dual battery

Fast Charging compatible on wired and wireless

Wireless PowerShare

Security Lock type: pattern, PIN, password

Biometric lock type: Face Recognition, Side-mounted Fingerprint sensor

Knox protection: real-time monitoring and protection.

Secure Folder: a secure space on the device to keep content such

Colors Mystic Black, Mystic Bronze

[Customization Hinge Color]

Metallic Silver, Metallic Gold, Metallic Red, Metallic Blue

Smoothing out the edges

As expected, the Galaxy Z Fold2 looks more like a finished product than its predecessor. The 6.2-inch Infiniy-O (punch-hole) cover screen makes it usable when folded. You can check emails, look up directions, watch videos, and pretty much anything you would normally do on your phone.

Unfold it and you’ll be greeted by the 7.6-inch main screen that now has a punch hole front camera instead of the hideous notch that was present in the original Galaxy Fold. That massive screen also has a 120Hz refresh rate.

The Galaxy Z Fold2 is held together by the Hideaway Hinge with the CAM mechanism that helps you prop up the fold in whatever way you want it to. They also added the sweeper tech first used on the Galaxy Z Flip. This repels dust and dirt between the body and the hinge.

Different capturing modes

The numbers on the cameras aren’t gonna jump out at you. What’s unique is the number of ways you can capture stills and footage with the device.

There’s Capture View Mode that lets you preview your last five shots on the bottom half of the screen without leaving the camera app.

There’s also Auto Framing which lets you shoot videos hands-free. When over three people are detected, it will automatically zoom out to capture everyone. It uses a machine learning algorithm to detect human faces. Trackable distance is between 1.5m to 2.5m.

It also retains the feature that lets you use the front camera as a viewfinder but use the main camera to take the photo for a higher resolution image. You also get staple Galaxy camera features like Pro Mode, Single Take, Bright Night, and many others.

A multitasking machine 

Everyone says this about devices with massive screens but Samsung has put in extra attention to make sure that the ONE UI version on the Galaxy Z Fold2 meets the needs of mobile multitaskers.

Multi-Active Window now lets you have more control and should be easier to use. There’s an improved Multi-Window Tray that lets you use multiple files from the same app and view them side by side.

You can drag and drop seamlessly to move or copy files and can switch between traditional screen or large screen layouts on the Main screen depending on your preference.

This is also the first foldable to implement the use of three apps all at the same time. With Edge Panel, you can customize how those three apps are laid out. The new Screen Capture tech also lets you take a screenshot and just select one of those three apps as the final product without needing to resize and edit.

Everything was just really built intuitively in a way that makes sense for the Fold2’s form factor.

Thom Browne Edition

As revealed during the Galaxy Note 20 series launch, the Galaxy Z Fold2 will have a Thom Browne Edition.

Other than the signature geometric grey and multicolor stripe look, software additions include a new lock screen and exclusive photo filter.

Each Thom Browne Edition Package includes the Galaxy Z Fold 2, Galaxy Watch3, Galaxy Buds Live and an array of fully customized accessories all featuring elements of Thom Browne’s iconic design.

Galaxy Z Premiere 

Just like previous Galaxy Fold owners, Galaxy Z Fold2 consumers have access to the Galaxy Z Premier Service. It’s an on-demand concierge support from a dedicated team of product experts.

Galaxy Z Fold2 owners will be provided one-time device protection against accidental display damage within one year of purchasing date.

With Galaxy Z Premiere, Galaxy Z owners can get a membership to Founders Card21, access to a prepared meal from a Michelin star restaurant, and an elite fairway golf and country club program at clubs across the U.S.23 with more benefits being added all the time.

Pricing and availability 

In the US, The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold2 will retail for US$ 1,999. It will be available starting September 18 in carrier and Unlocked by Samsung versions through Samsung.com, carriers and select retailers online.

Pre-orders for the Galaxy Z Fold2 5G begin September 2, 2020 at 12:01 am ET.

Original Galaxy Fold and Galaxy Z Flip users can trade-in their device to get the Galaxy Z Fold2 for as low as US$ 25/month with up to US$ 800 trade-in value. Users can save up to US$ 650 on trade-ins of other eligible devices. These offers are for a limited time.

Meanwhile, The Galaxy Z Fold2 Thom Browne edition will retail for US$ 3,299 and will be available for pre-order beginning September 2, 2020 with general availability on September 25, 2020.

In the Philippines, The Galaxy Z Fold2 will be available in Mystic Black and Mystic Bronze on

September 25, 2020 for select Samsung Online Partners and October 2, 2020 for select Authorized Samsung Stores.

Pre-order period is from September 12 to 24, 2020.

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Xiaomi’s foldable phone spotted in the wild

Is this a prototype?

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Everyone’s getting into foldable smartphones these days. After Samsung’s semi-successful foray into the market, other smartphones are rushing to compete with the South Korean giant. One of the earliest experimenters with the form factor, Xiaomi is apparently making strides in the foldable market. In China, Xiaomi’s foldable phone was spotted out in the wild.

In a now-deleted Weibo post (saved by GSMArena), the leaked phone is a whopper of a device. It’s obviously that Xiaomi’s foldable phone since it runs MIUI 12. It looks a lot larger than Samsung’s Galaxy Z lineup. However, it’s large enough to wield in a subway, as the photo portrays.

Whatever this is, it doesn’t look like it’s doing well. The device has a sizable crease running along its midsection. Back in the Galaxy Fold’s early days, Samsung had the same problem before fixing it in later iterations. Since the technology already exists, it’s likely that the spotted Xiaomi device is an early version of whatever the company is actually working on.

Xiaomi has teased an upcoming foldable phone in the past. However, the company has not outed a consumer-friendly foldable phone outside of prototypes. The last time we heard about a potential Xiaomi foldable phone was an old patent revealed last year.

SEE ALSO: Xiaomi patents an upcoming foldable phone

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Samsung will remove the free charger from more phones

Confirmed in an official Q&A

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The cat’s out of the bag. After months of persistent rumors, Samsung has finally ended its free charging adapters and wired earphones starting with the Galaxy S21 series. The controversial decision mimics Apple’s identical ones last October. One question remains, though: Will Samsung remove the free charger in other smartphones? Apparently, yes.

In an official Q&A with Samsung’s officials, the company explained why it chose to remove the free charger from the flagship series. As expected, Samsung is taking the same stance as Apple; that is, everyone already has a bunch of extra chargers lying around anyway. Further, the removal will help in Samsung’s sustainability goals for the future.

However, in explaining their stance, Samsung has revealed its plans for the future. “To support our Galaxy community in this journey, we are transitioning to removal of the charger plug and earphones in our latest line of Galaxy smartphones,” Patrick Chomet, executive vice president of product and innovation, explains.

Besides the Galaxy S21 series, Samsung is likely phasing out the free chargers in future models, too. Thankfully, if you haven’t acclimated to the charger-less future yet, the company is not changing last year’s smartphone packaging; not yet at least, according to online store pages.

If Samsung is truly removing its chargers for future models, we’ll know soon enough. Unlike Apple, who releases smartphones more sporadically, Samsung launches numerous models throughout the year. After starting the year off with a charger-less bang, 2021 is going to be an exciting roller coaster for flagship users.

SEE ALSO: Samsung Galaxy S21 Series Hands-on

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Trump administration blacklists Xiaomi, 10 other Chinese companies

Xiaomi headed the Huawei way?

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The US has added Xiaomi and 10 other Chinese companies to a blacklist amid national security concerns. The current blacklist is only focused on companies that have military ties and strategic importance in China.

The Defense Department released names of additional “Communist Chinese military companies” operating directly or indirectly in the United States.

Although adding Xiaomi to the list is surprising, the company has largely remained apolitical and focuses on making affordable smartphones. Considered to be China’s answer to Apple, Xiaomi plays a crucial role in progressing China’s telecommunication industry. It surpassed Apple in global smartphone sales in the third quarter, according to IDC.

Xiaomi is China’s second-largest smartphone maker and dominates multiple developing markets like India. Xiaomi’s stock plunged more than 10 percent following the announcement, although it’s considered to be a knee-jerk reaction at the moment.

The ban means that Xiaomi risks getting delisted from global benchmarks like MSCI and American stock exchanges. Just last week, China Mobile, China Telecom, and China Unicom were removed from MSCI indexes. This largely affects their ability to raise capital from the open market in the future due to global compliance complications.

In response, a Xiaomi spokesperson told GadgetMatch, “The Company has been in compliance with the law and operating in compliance with the relevant laws and regulations of jurisdictions where it conducts its businesses. The Company reiterates that it provides products and services for civilian and commercial use. The Company confirms that it is not owned, controlled, or affiliated with the Chinese military, and is not a “Communist Chinese Military Company” defined under the NDAA. The Company will take an appropriate course of actions to protect the interests of the Company and its shareholders.”

Other companies banned

Apart from Xiami, the additional companies blacklisted include Advanced Micro-Fabrication Equipment, Luokong Technology Corporation, Beijing Zhongguancun Development Investment Center, GOWIN Semiconductor, Grand China Air Company, Global Tone Communication Technology, China National Aviation Holding, and Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China (COMAC).

Furthermore, the ban is a stepping stone for US authorities to curb Chinese companies’ growth in the international market. The US took a similar step with Huawei and gradually pushed it out of every possible industry. Today, Huawei can’t use Google Mobile Services, cannot ship phones to the US, and has lost significant ground in supplying 5G equipment to telcos worldwide.

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