Update: August 6, 2021 (3:00 PM ET): We’ve updated the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 rumor roundup below with some last-minute info that fully fleshes out what to expect from the phone. Read on for all the latest on Samsung’s upcoming foldable phone.
Original article: Samsung‘s next flagship foldable launch is hurtling towards us. The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 will be the third iteration of the firm’s bendy series, and judging by rumors, it’s shaping up to be the most intriguing entry yet.
Below, you’ll find a comprehensive roundup of the credible leaks, rumors, and news surrounding the Galaxy Z Fold 3 so far. Be sure to bookmark this article and check back frequently to ensure you don’t miss any updates.
See also: The complete buyer’s guide for the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2
Name and release date
We’ve had the Samsung Galaxy Fold, and more recently, the jump to the Galaxy Z Fold 2 moniker. So is Samsung set to shake up its foldable line name yet again? We don’t think so. In fact, there’s already evidence to suggest it will launch the newest version as the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 (see the next section for more).
See also: The best foldable phones you can buy
As for the foldable’s release date, Samsung is holding its trademark Unpacked event on August 11. Samsung confirmed that it will skip the Galaxy Note this year, but will launch two foldables instead. We expect the company to announce the Galaxy Z Fold 3 and Galaxy Z Flip 3 at the event. It might also launch the newest Galaxy Watch and a new set of Galaxy Buds.
Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3: Design
Our first look at the foldable came in May, and it didn’t bring huge surprises. The alleged promotional renders, stemming from a Twitter tipster, suggested the foldable would still open like a book and adopt similar stylings to the Galaxy Z Fold 2.
Crisper images of the Galaxy Z Fold 3 broke cover on June 24 courtesy of tipster Evan Blass. The render includes an S Pen, suggesting the foldable may not just support the stylus but ship with it. This also makes sense considering Samsung isn’t launching a Note device this year. While this effectively makes the Z Fold 3 this year’s Note replacement, there’s no slot to store it in the foldable. Early rumors and more recent renders suggest this may not be possible.
Speaking of those recent renders, folks over at 91Mobiles obtained renders of Samsung’s S Pen case for the Galaxy Z Fold 3, further suggesting that the phone might not have a dedicated storage slot for the accessory. You can see the case renders below.
Later, we saw some more leaked renders, although this time they were CAD-based. These shots also showcased the colorways Samsung might offer, including green, silver, and black. A later leak reiterated these options.
WinFuture later added to the leak library. This time, the German publication gave us a look at the foldable’s cover and inner displays. These shots provide more evidence that a punch-hole camera will be usurped by an under-display camera on the folding screen.
Once again, it doesn’t look likely that you’ll be able to store the S Pen in the phone. It’s possible Samsung could take the same approach it did with the Galaxy S21 Ultra and sell a case that includes a slot for the stylus.
Specs and features
The Galaxy Z Fold 3 recently passed through the FCC, revealing a few key feature additions. This listing confirmed the existence of S Pen support, UWB support, NFC, sub-6GHz and mmWave connectivity, and reverse charging at up to 9W. Interestingly, MST technology is also present, which is a boon for Samsung Pay users. However, it’s not clear if that will be supported in all countries.
The FCC also confirmed the inclusion of a Qualcomm Snapdragon SoC, likely the Snapdragon 888. We also know from previous listings that the charger certified for the phone will support 25W charging.
Rumors in April pointed to a possible IP rating for the Galaxy Z Fold 3. As per tipster Max Weinbach, it could be an IP68 rating — the current benchmark for flagships. This was seemingly corroborated by Evan Blass in a more massive specs leak.
This tip also shed light on the Galaxy Z Fold 3’s camera hardware. Blass reiterated earlier leaks suggesting that the phone will pack three 12MP cameras. If true, the Galaxy Z Fold 3 won’t be able to record 8K videos. The phone would need a sensor that packs at least 33MP to accomplish this.
Also read: Samsung Galaxy Note series — A history of innovation
A 10MP cover selfie camera is also set to feature. However, the under-display camera sensor is rumored to be just 4MP. This goes against earlier leaks pointing to a 16MP sensor. As per leaker Ice Universe, the under-display camera “is not bad” but still doesn’t reach the level of traditional selfie cameras. Presumably, Samsung is polishing this particular camera for video calls rather than still selfies.
Per Blass, the foldable will also feature a 7.6-inch foldable display mated to a 6.2-inch cover display.
Samsung will apparently offer two S Pen models for use with the Galaxy Z Fold 3, namely the S Pen Pro and the Fold Edition. It’s possible the latter option will be compatible with the leaked phone case.
Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3: Price and availability
Samsung hasn’t dramatically upped the price of its flagships in 2021, so we don’t believe the Galaxy Z Fold 3 will see a huge price spike. Its predecessor debuted at $1,999, a similar price to the original Galaxy Fold.
Samsung doesn’t have much foldable competition, so it doesn’t need to consider the Galaxy Z Fold 3 rivals’ pricing. However, considering the Galaxy Z Fold 3 is meant to entice Galaxy Note users to upgrade, a slight price decrease could definitely help.
It’s also possible Samsung will renew its trade-in program for those wanting to switch out a Galaxy Fold or Galaxy Z Fold 2 for the new model. It seems that Samsung might allow users to trade in more than one device (phones, tablets, smartwatches) for its foldable flagship, too.
As per a recent leak, the Galaxy Z Fold 3 could cost €1,899 (~$2,233) for the 256GB model and €1,999 (~$2,351) for the 512GB variant. Keep in mind that straight conversions don’t usually matter for Samsung. It’s more likely the phone would launch in the US at $1,899 than for over $2,200.
Related: There’s only one feature I want from the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 — Affordability
As for availability, expect the device to be available worldwide soon after its August 11 debut. It’s unclear how the global chipset shortage will impact the pace of the rollout, though.
Users in China may receive a custom Galaxy Z Fold 3 rebranded as the Galaxy W22 5G, but the device may only debut in November.