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Samsung Galaxy Z Flip vs Motorola razr: which is the better foldable clamshell?

On: February 12, 2020

After almost a year of speculations and rumours, Samsung finally launched its latest Galaxy S series flagship smartphones called the Galaxy S20Galaxy S20+ and Galaxy S20 Ultra. At the same event, the chaebol also unveiled the much-anticipated Samsung Galaxy Z Flip. The latest foldable smartphone from the South Korean giant takes a massive detour from the Samsung Galaxy Fold‘s design, and adopts a clamshell form factor. As such, it’s natural to wonder how the Galaxy Z Flip stacks up against the Motorola razr, the only other smartphone with a clamshell folding form factor. To find out which of these phones come out on top, read on for our detailed comparison.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip vs Motorola razr: specifications compared

Design and display

As mentioned above, both these smartphones feature a clamshell form factor, making them look identical when in a folded state. However, that’s where the similarities between the two end. Starting with the build quality, the Motorola razr is crafted from plastic with a stainless steel chassis, while the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip flaunts a more premium Corning Gorilla Glass 6 body with an aluminium skeleton. Motorola claims that the razr can last up to 1,00,000 folds. The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip, on the other hand, is claimed to have a life cycle of 2,00,000 folds and unfolds.

Coming to the display, the Motorola razr is a nod to the Razr phones of the past and comes with a thick chin and wide notch on the top of its 6.2-inch FlexiView display. The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip, on the other hand, looks like any other Samsung high-end flagship with an edge-to-edge 6.7-inch Infinity Flex AMOLED screen and a centred punch-hole for the selfie camera. The key difference lies in the actual panel used by these brands. Motorola has opted for a Plastic OLED panel, which is more prone to scratches and has a more prominent crease when unfolded. Motorola has also announced that due to the nature of the display panel, it’s normal to expect minor lumps and bumps on the razr display. The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip gets brownie points here for using a more durable ultra-thin glass (UTG) for its AMOLED panel. While the Samsung offering also has a crease, it’s better protected compared to the competitor. Samsung is also offering a sharper FHD+ screen resolution compared to HD+ on the Motorola razr.

Both the Motorola razr and Samsung Galaxy Z Flip have a secondary display on the outside to interact with notifications and operate the phone even in the folded state. The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip comes with a tiny 1.1-inch Super AMOLED display with 112 x 300 pixels resolution to view the time and notification snippets. The razr is more practical here with a 2.7-inch (600×800 pixels) Quick View display. The second display can be used to take selfies, view notifications, control music playback, and a lot more, just like the main screen. However, the Motorola Razr display can either be fully open or closed unlike Galaxy Z Flip, which lets users open it halfway and open up more opportunities for multitasking with two halves independent of each other.

Performance, software and battery

Let’s talk performance now. The Motorola razr attracted a lot of flak for offering mid-range specs in a premium price range. The smartphone comes packing a dated Snapdragon 710 chipset with 6GB RAM and 128GB storage. The processor is two years old and will soon become obsolete. In the software department, the Motorola razr comes with near-stock Android 9 Pie, which again is quite dated now.

The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip kicks the razr out of the water in the performance department. The smartphone comes rocking the most-powerful chipset from the last year, Qualcomm Snapdragon 855+. Accompanying the processor is a massive 8GB RAM and 256GB storage. While the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip doesn’t boot One UI like its flagship siblings, it runs on a customised version of the latest Android 10, which is an edge over the Motorola offering. Samsung also announced that it has formed a collaboration with Google to offer deeper Google Duo integration with Samsung’s apps like phone, contacts, messaging and more. Samsung will also bring Pixel-exclusive features like Live Caption to its high-end flagships.

As for the battery, the Motorola razr features a modest 2,150mAh cell with 15W fast charging. On the other hand, the Galaxy Z Flip is equipped with a 3,300mAh battery featuring identical 15W fast charging but adds support for wireless charging.

Cameras

In the camera department, the Motorola razr sports a single camera on the back and another in the display notch. The main camera is a 16MP shooter with Night Vision mode, f/1.7 aperture, Dual Pixel tech, EIS, laser autofocus, and a dual-LED flash unit. Selfies and video calls are taken care of by the 5MP snapper on the inside. However, users can also use the main camera for self-portraits with the help of the quick view display on the outside.

Coming to the Samsung Galaxy z Flip, the foldable smartphone ships with a dual-camera module on the back. The camera setup comprises of a pair of 12MP shooters featuring f/1.8 and f/2.2 aperture, respectively. Samsung also comes out ahead in the selfie department as you get a 10MP f/2.4 sensor in the punch hole.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip vs Motorola razr: pricing compared

While the Motorola razr was launched last year, a supply issue has forced the brand to postpone the release. According to the latest report, the smartphone will start shipping globally from February 6th and is expected to launch in India sometime next month. The phone will set you back by $1,499.99, which is roughly Rs 1,07,000. The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip is also priced in the premium bracket at $1,380 (~Rs 98,500) and will be available in the US and Korea starting February 14th. Recently, the pre-registrations for the handset has also started in India, and we can expect it to launch in the coming weeks.

Bottomline

The Motorola razr is riding the nostalgia wave of the iconic Razr phones of the past and will find takers in the fans of the cult device. However, when it comes to functionality and performance, the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip comes across as a better option among the two. You get a super premium build quality, bendable glass display, top-of-the-line specs and good cameras for the price tag, which are the aspects the razr has compromised on.

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Abhiman Biswas

Abhiman is obsessed with all things tech. His hobbies include reading on his Kindle and clicking random pictures on his phone. His secret superpowers happen to be mixing great cocktails and lip reading. In his spare time, you are likely to find him cleaning his aquascape, researching new species of aquatic fishes and planning which aquatic plants to buy next.