Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 review

Samsung would like to fold this round…

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Samsung has always inaugurated the tech season with its Galaxy Foldable series launch, leaving little room for any other tech company to shimmy a product launch in the weeks around it. However, the Samsung Galaxy Unpacked 2023 event hero product is not actually the Fold but the Z Flip 5. You can read more about it in our review here.

The Z Fold 5 in question is an incremental upgrade over the previous smartphone but it’s not all gloom and doom. These upgrades slowly put Samsung’s Z Fold 5 back into the race with the competition. Although, in hindsight, you really don’t have a premium option in the Indian market besides Samsung (at the time of writing).


There have been improvements to the overall dimensions and weight. The Fold is now thinner and lighter. Samsung says the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 is 10 grams lighter than the Z Fold 4. This may sound like a day’s worth of gym activity rather than a year’s worth of innovation on paper but the hand feel is astonishingly comfortable. And that’s partly because it's thinner too.

The hinge has also improved. The Z Fold 4 hinge created a wedge shape when folded which may allow dust and water to get in from the gap. That is no longer the case here. The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 has a water drop hinge which closes the gap between the folded screen. It’s also IPX8 rated so water is not an issue.

The newer hinge also brings a smoother and more relaxed mechanism. You may not need the strength of a Sumo wrestler to open the thing or snap it shut. The hinge is also designed with a shock dispersion layer which will make accidental oopsies tolerable. Meanwhile, the cover display has Corning Gorilla Glass Victus 2 for additional screen protection. However, there’s still a prominent crease running down the centre like before as well. It’s not very good at hiding itself.

Performance and features

Internally there’s a Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 (based on Mobile Platform for Galaxy) with 12GB RAM for all storage variants. Samsung says there’s a larger vapour chamber to keep these angry bits on the inside from overcooking itself. It’s also optimised for gaming this time with better refresh rate support for the inside display.

Is the Galaxy Z Fold 5 a performance powerhouse? Yes, and it’s definitely capable of delivering a great experience no matter how you wish to utilise the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5’s inner display and what you choose to do with it. It’s brimming with features to spoil you with its massive inner display. Multitasking? It’s qualified enough to make you want to toss away your work laptop like a frisbee. You won’t be able to type as joyfully as you would on a proper keyboard but the screen real estate is good enough to get emails and easy stuff out of the way. 

You can even move files effortlessly between two supported apps. Let’s say you have a pen drive chock-full of client work, PDFs and anything that comes to mind. Plonk it in the Z Fold 5, select whatever you want and drag it to any native Samsung app. You can press and hold a photo from the Gallery app and then open Gmail with another hand (while holding the photo on the screen with one finger) and drop it in there to quickly attach it. It’s effortless and pure magic from Samsung. However, it doesn’t work with all apps. It works with only the apps that support drag and drop on Android.

We played Genshin Impact and Diablo Immortal and both ran buttery smooth on this foldable. However, these games didn’t look as crisp and detailed as they do on the Apple iPad Mini. The Mini is larger and has the same processor as the Apple iPhone 14, so in comparison, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 should dish out a closer level of visual fidelity, right? Strangely, it looks hazy. The upscaled sort of hazy that you see in PC games through Performance-centric DLSS or AMD’s FSR methods. Regardless, the games run without any frame drops or overheating issues here.

That’s gaming and office work taken care of yes? Now comes the fun part, creative stuff! We got the ₹7999 Slim S Pen Case for this review as well and it basically lets you use the S Pen on the inside cover display. This S Pen is not the same as the one inside the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra. This one has a softer nib which is suited for the foldable display and it only works with the Z Fold 5’s inner display. So if you want to quickly jot down a note on the cover display, it’s not possible. Pull open the Z Fold 5’s display and you have a lovely 7.6-inch canvas for editing and creating. We spent a whopping 2 hours editing in Lightroom using the S Pen and it was responsive and felt at home on the Fold 5. We wouldn’t be surprised if Samsung plonks the S Pen inside the next Fold like the S23 Ultra.


Almost 20% of the battery dropped in 1 hour 45 mins of using Lightroom on the main display. We used it with more than half brightness here so that should give you a good idea of how the battery life is if you push the Galaxy Z Fold 5 for processing-intensive tasks. Gaming is surprisingly not as hard on bottoming out the battery life. Depending on what graphic settings you play on, the Z Fold 5 should last a full day of regular multitasking, gaming and content consumption.


The (checks note) 7.6-inch QXGA+ Dynamic AMOLED 2X Infinity Flex Display with 374ppi and a 120Hz adaptive refresh rate (1-120Hz) is 30% brighter than before. It can go up to an eyeball-massaging 1750 nits! Besides that, there’s not much changed here. Even the 6.2-inch cover display is pretty much the same in size and resolution. Samsung’s Galaxy Z Fold 5 remains pretty much the same from here on.

Under harsh sunlight, the Fold 5 performs better than the Fold 4. The Fold 5’s display (especially the cover display) also has a slightly deeper colour tone compared to the Fold 4. Photos and videos look natural here and not excessively bright like the Fold 4’s cover display.

The aspect ratio still remains a worrisome thing about the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5. The cover display is too narrow to do any basic stuff. Here’s what we said about the Galaxy Z Fold 4, “Even as a regular smartphone, the cover screen is a bit too narrow and way too tall for everyday use. The keyboard is squeezed in so typing is anything but pleasant. Meanwhile, scrolling content-heavy apps like Instagram is like reading a book written on a toilet paper roll. It’s way too cramped.” The same thing holds true for Galaxy Z Fold 5 as well.


What about the cameras you ask? Well, it’s the same as the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4. A 12MP + 12MP + 50MP rear camera module will look and click familiar photos from last year’s model. If you want an in-depth review of the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 camera, you can click here. Even the cover camera and the high-tech in-display camera are the same.

However, the new Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 (based on Mobile Platform for Galaxy) brings a whole new ISP and with that, you get real-time semantic segmentation, quicker face detection and a better bokeh effect. The same camera smarts are in the Galaxy Z Flip 5, however, the Fold 5 has better camera hardware. There’s more detail and better sharpness too. Although the improvements are barely noticeable, it’s there. Especially in colour depth and sharpness. The Fold 5’s camera quality has better colour depth, more details and tighter exposure control over the Fold 4. It’s as if the AI camera smarts are getting closer to Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra. Samsung is taking full advantage of the new ISP and processing on the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 here.

The Fold 5 can also do Super Slo-mo in 1080p now. It has been 720p since the Galaxy S9+ but these minor upgrades are always welcomed. You can check out our reel here if you want to see how the Super Slo-mo looks at 1080p now.


The constant pressure of yearly innovations is getting tougher and you can feel the pinch in the Galaxy Z Fold 5. This feels like a minor upgrade over last year’s Galaxy Z Fold 4. Hinge, weight and brightness aside, Samsung should’ve brought the S23 Ultra’s camera chops to justify the flagship reputation of its dear foldable. 

This is a year for software upgrades. There are some new software tricks like an improved taskbar and a neat feature called a hidden pop-up. It will spring forth a WhatsApp chat from the edges of your display when you want to quickly reply to the current message. An itsy bitsy window will let you see the message and reply quickly and then shove the pop-up into the sidelines. There’s also two-handed drag and drop which lets you drag and hold something while you use the other hand to open another app and drop it there. It seems very handy for power users. Samsung says these software features are coming to the older Samsung Fold models as well.

Stuff Says

A good foldable that gets better but is still shy of being the best ever from Samsung
Good stuff
Bad stuff
  1. Brighter display

  1. Deeper colours

  1. Thinner and lighter than before

  1. Performance powerhouse

  1. Good software tuning on cameras

  1. 1080p Super Slo-mo!

  1. Very expensive for minor upgrades

  1. The aspect ratio is problematic