Motorola this week became the latest handset maker to debut a foldable phone. Will it succeed?
The Motorola Razr 2020 revives the most iconic flip phone design into a new form factor – a foldable phone. But rather than expanding to a widescreen, the Razr folds clamshell-style to a form factor that’s half the size of traditional smartphones. It challenges the notion of what a foldable can be and in so doing, the current king of foldables, the Samsung Galaxy Fold.
This isn’t so much a contest as it is a battle of philosophies, together with the Razr designed to reduce its dimensions while the Galaxy Fold attempts to match into its central display as you can.
Though the Samsung device is nearer to the notion of ‘foldables’ as they are popularly known as a bridge between phone and tablet – the Razr challenges the idea that apparatus in this group that is newfound must endeavor to maximize display dimensions.
In fact, we guess viewers know which of those devices they favour – but this guide lays out exactly how they differ, to endurance from specs. Their appeals preclude a lot of direct comparisons, while we point out which has elements across the other. They have mission goals, and if they triumph, we’re here to tell you.
Price analysis of Motorola Razr
The Motorola Razr will soon be accessible from the US in January 2020, additional areas TBA
Motorola Razr price: $1,500
Samsung Galaxy Fold is available today in the US, UK, and South Korea
Samsung Galaxy Fold price: $1,980 / #1,800 / AU$2,900
These are, without a doubt, premium devices, costing either half again or even two times as much as the most expensive flagship tablets on the market. You are paying in this generation of foldable apparatus.
The Motorola Razr 2019 has just been officially introduced to the world, and while it is coming out soon in the US – preorders start December 26, 2019, with a January 2020 launch – it is uncertain once the apparatus will come to other areas (though it’s intended for Asia, Australia, and Latin America). We just know the US price: $1,500. It will be a Verizon exclusive.
Following a launch in April 2019 due to durability issues, that the Samsung Galaxy Fold has been available to purchase in the US, UK, and South Korea since September and Australia since October. It pricier, at $1,980 / #1,800 / AU$2,900, together with exclusive carrier spouses AT&T in the US and EE in the UK. (Note that the US just has the 4G LTE version, while the 5G version is the only one available in the UK.)
Given the difficulties using the Fold, Samsung looped in 24/7 service (by telephone, video chat, or on-the-go visit to one of its stores) with purchase of their telephone for its whole lifetime.
Likewise picking up a Motorola Razr in the US grants access to 24/7 chat or 14-hour-per-day direct apparatus service, as well as guarantees to replace faulty parts or unduly damaged displays (Motorola hasn’t announced what type of service and/or warranty package will be provided in different areas ). Fixing the display for reasons not covered under warranty will put you back $299 (around #231, AU$439).
Design features of Motorola Razr 2019/2020
As we mentioned previously, both foldables specify their appeal throughout their design. The Motorola Razr is slim and portable, although the Samsung Galaxy Fold expands into display real estate for media and productivity and is compact.
Considering prior foldables (the Fold, the Huawei Mate X, as well as the Royole FlexPai) saw bendable displays as a means to get more screen volume in precisely the same space, it is astonishing that Motorola went exactly the opposite direction – and pulled off it. Unfolded, its 6.2-inch display is almost identical in size and ratio to the Xperia 5 (h/t for that observation to @tnkgirl); folded shut, it takes up half the footprint of an iPhone 11 Pro Max.
The phone is slightly thicker, naturally, with the two halves stacked – 14mm – although even that isn’t too big, and it is thinner than the Galaxy Fold’s 15.5mm. The Razr looks featuring the scalloped border which tucks into the big chin that is bottom. Folding it closed displays the 2.7-inch front screen and the 16MP camera under it – and yes, you can use that display to shoot selfies rather than the little 5MP camera beneath the inside display. More on that miniature screen later.
The Razr’s hinge is smooth but turning the phone open is as easy as it had been with the original. Fair enough – telephones have gotten much denser – therefore it requires a little work to pry open one-handed. It is still satisfying to snap the phone closed to end a call, and you will notice just how little bag or your pocket it takes up.
There are a few disappointments in the Razr’s design, such as sharp and tough to media side buttons (lock and volume rocker). There’s not any slot for a SIM or storage – and while neither does the Samsung Galaxy Fold, the latter storage eases that pain point. Nor do either have a 3.5mm phone jack.
The Galaxy Fold takes the reverse approach: begin with a smartphone footprint and then unfold to get display. The device was re-released in September 2019 with refinements into the screen and hinge for durability, and it is pleasant to unfold the phone using a snap into place – but decent luck trying to do it one-handed.
The Fold is narrower than many flagship phones when folded closed, and unfolded flat to its 7.3-inch maximum, its own display sits between the enormous Samsung Galaxy S10 5G (6.7 inches) and the iPad Mini (7.9 inches). The inside display is topped by a pair of cameras for video chatting, which complement the small lens onto the front and the 3 standard (main, ultrawide, telephoto) on the rear, that’s the sort of overkill which lets you shoot photos from any orientation.
The Galaxy Fold is hefty at 268g, and seems like a candybar when folded up. Though the clamshell-closed Razr is likewise hefty, its weight is less.
Display of Razr foldable
The Samsung Galaxy Fold’s massive AMOLED display is a sight to behold, though it’s a crease down the center. Do not expect it to be as sharp as standard smartphone displays: the 1536 x 2152 resolution is closer to tablet density compared to that found on flagships. However, you pay for the actual estate, and it’s impressive to use with Google Maps or other programs specced because of its structure (not all media can make good use of its 4:3-ish ratio).
There’s a 4.6-inch 720 x 1680 screen on the front, which serves just fine for previewing and browsing around the phone’s Android OS as normal, but its compact bezels and dimness make it somewhat lackluster. Not a huge deal given tasks will be finished on the significant center screen.
The Motorola Razr’s central 6.2-inch P-OLED display is similarly lower-resolution than traditional phones, but its principal axis does not show a crease – at least not right off the assembly line. This is due to some design wizardry that slides out the screen while the telephone closes before tucking the display back in to the hinge part. Yes, this produces a small (several millimeter) gap in which dust or water particles could enter, but Motorola seems unconcerned with this vector.
The leading 2.7-inch display functions as a remarkable selfie-aiding screen that reveals surprising clarity for its 800 x 600 resolution and small size. But you use it in order to preview texts, emails, and other messages that you can reply to with a few suggestions that are auto-generated – a lot like a smartwatch.
On the other hand, the Galaxy Fold’s 4.6-inch front screen is a fully operational smartphone display for unabridged access to this Android OS – though it is a bit small and dim for extensive use.
The Motorola Razr’s 16MP primary camera is exactly what you will be using many, although the telephone is new, what little testing we have done reveals an extremely by-the-numbers Motorola camera setup, with decent performance aided by improved photo applications because the Moto Z4 hit the stands. The camera program is straightforward, with photo, video, and also a branching menu with various modes (such as a nighttime mode).
As previously mentioned, the principal camera can be utilized with the front display when the phone is folded closed. This is not only for photos – you can video chat in this mode also.
But say you’re video chatting on the front screen and want screen – the phone and simply flip the phone open will transition to the open screen that is central. . .and the 5MP camera above it. (It may also be utilized for selfie photos.)
The Galaxy Fold’s camera array is a six-camera amalgam of shooters lifted from previously-released Samsung flagships. The outward-facing 10MP selfie camera has been chosen from the Samsung Galaxy Note 10’s front-facing camera – which is just okay, though we mostly used it to unlocking the phone.
Unfolding the Fold shows two front-facing cameras (a 10MP selfie camera and 8MP RGB camera), both obtained from the Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus – like the outer camera, this you can take Live Focus (Samsung’s Portrait mode) photos.This duo is largely for video chatting and complicated selfies.
The Galaxy Fold’s rear setup can also be drawn from the S10 Plus: a trio of lenses featuring a 12MP standard (variable aperture f/1.5 + f/2.4 77 level FoV), also a 12MP telephoto, along with an ultrawide (123-degree FoV). These are impressive cameras, even though they are not quite as advanced as the Note 10 lenses.
The Samsung Galaxy Fold is far and away here, with a Snapdragon 855 chipset, 12GB of RAM, and 512GB of storage. The gadget is quick when we pop open its display and run several apps at the same time.
Which is not to say the Motorola Razr is slow – it runs on the Snapdragon 710, a chipset designed for phones, together with 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. The design necessitated a chip that wouldn’t run so fast it warmed up the phone – and what is more, would drain the battery. As you’ll see below, the Razr has far less battery to throw about.
The phone ran fine, sorting through regular tasks without a hitch and playing media. It’s hard to imagine exactly what, if anything, will trip up this.
Both phones come with Android 9 Pie out of the box – the Galaxy Fold has been supposed to be published long before Android 10 was launched, whereas the Motorola Razr was similarly originally scheduled for a summer release prior to being delayed before in 2019.
Both phones lack a storage slot, so they can’t have their storage. This is a problem for the Galaxy Fold’s 512GB distance, but it’s a harsher penalty for the 128GB in the Razr. However, that should be plenty for most users.
Among the concerns about foldables appears to be whether the screen real estate will require more battery. If this ends up being a severe significance, the Samsung Galaxy Fold has ready for it using a 4,380mAh total capacity divide between the two phone” halves.” We were able to get a day-and-a-half battery lifetime, but this varied wildly based on display usage.
Likewise, the Razr has split its battery between both divisions – but its capacity is a mAh. This seems concerning, to say the least. Today’s smartphones go up from there and start at 3,000 mAh. Motorola is confident users will find a day out of the battery life, partially because their usage will change with some functionality outsourced to the front screen. We are going to look forward to testing this out.
In any case, both devices include 15W chargers in the box. The Fold comes a bit ahead in this respect, with wireless charging and the capacity to lend its capacity out to other devices a characteristic that debuted with the Samsung Galaxy S10 line.
These are distinct devices with consumers that are distinct: the Galaxy Fold appeals to folks who desire more screen real estate at the expense of sleekness, while the Motorola Razr is broadly designed to re-introduce back compact smart phones .
In other words: you know which device there likely is not too much overlap between those devices, and appeals to you. What does matter, then, are how effective these devices are at accomplishing what they set out to do.
The Galaxy Fold meets its goal of bringing a tablet computer to a phone battle, even although it’s not the most elegant apparatus with all the seam in its own display and front trailer display. Nevertheless, it will probably go down as the expensive innovator that attracted foldable displays to the mainstream… or at least paved the way for greater executions down the line.
The Motorola Razr accomplishes its intent to shrink smartphones down. Folded up, the Razr is half the size of the majority of flagship handsets, which means it’s great for folks with small hands or who take their apparatus in small pockets. You are going to need to pay for the privilege since the rest of the phone packs mid-range specs at best.