Samsung’s new folding phone has a screen that bends in half — it launches Feb. 14 for $1,380

Samsung announced the $1,380 Galaxy Z Flip during a press event in San Francisco on Tuesday. It’s the company’s second phone with a bendy screen, following the Galaxy Fold that launched last year. The Galaxy Fold broke when it was first given to reviewers, including CNBC, so Samsung took it back in and refined it before it was released to the public. It launches on Feb. 14 and will be available from AT&T, Sprint, Best Buy and through Samsung.

The Galaxy Z Flip has a different design than the Galaxy Fold. Instead of opening like a book to reveal a larger tablet-sized screen inside, the Galaxy Z Flip looks like a traditional phone but can fold in half into a smaller square. It’s sort of like the old flip phones we used to carry, only larger and with a full touch screen inside. It can also stay propped at 90 degrees for things like video chat.

It has a different design than the Galaxy Fold that may make it more durable than Samsung’s first foldable phone. The hinge is supposed to be more durable to help keep debris out. That was one of the main issues with the Galaxy Fold.

CNBC Tech: Galaxy Z Flip 3
Samsung Galaxy Z Flip

The design is appealing since it allows you to carry a phone with a big screen that doesn’t take up as much space in your pocket. And, at least in theory, the screen should be protected from things like key scratches while it’s closed, at least so long as dust and other particles don’t get inside the hinge or the display.

CNBC Tech: Galaxy Z Flip
Samsung Galaxy Z Flip Samsung

It was announced alongside Samsung’s new flagship Android phones including the Galaxy S20, Galaxy S20+ and Galaxy S20 Ultra. But it’s a bit different. It doesn’t have the same really high-end cameras found in those phones, for example, and runs on a slightly older but still powerful Qualcomm processor.

Its closest competitor is the new Motorola RAZR, which is exclusive to Verizon but isn’t as powerful as Samsung’s phone and doesn’t seem as nice as Samsung’s phone.

Samsung said supply of the Galaxy Z Flip will be limited, so people interested in being the first to own it should be prepared to buy it on Feb. 14.


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