Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 Review: Covering All the Bases

Key Takeaways

  • The Z Flip 5’s larger Cover Screen is a standout feature, allowing for easier notifications, widgets, and quick settings without fully opening the phone.
  • While the Z Flip 5’s cameras and price may not be impressive compared to other flagship phones, its performance, battery life, and Samsung’s software support make it a solid option for those looking for a versatile and stylish device.

Foldable phones are no longer a new thing; Samsung has been hammering that point home with iterative updates in recent years. However, the Galaxy Z Flip 5 finally sees a much-needed and requested upgrade. Flipping never felt so…unnecessary?

The biggest difference since the beginning between Samsung’s Z Flip series and Motorola’s Razr foldable series has been the outside displays. The Razr started with a 2.7-inch outside display, while the original Z Flip had a barely functional 1.1-inch screen. The next couple of models bumped it up to 1.9 inches, but Motorola’s outside display remained bigger and far more useful.

Finally, Samsung has equipped the Z Flip 5 with a competent outside screen, and it’s long overdue. You might think the Z Fold series is Samsung’s foldable darling, but the Z Flip series more than doubles the Z Fold in sales. This is the foldable phone for the mass market, and a flashy new Cover Screen makes it all the more enticing.


Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5

$1120 $1270 Save $150

The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 is a flip-fold style foldable with a big outside display and a small compact size.


Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2

6.7 inches, 1080 x 2640


256GB, 512GB



Operating System
Android 13, One UI 5.1.1

Front camera
10 MP, f/2.2, 23mm (wide), 1.22µm

Unfolded: 165.1 x 71.9 x 6.9 mmFolded: 85.1 x 71.9 x 15.1 mm

187 g

25W wired, 15W wireless

IP Rating


Main Camera
12 MP, f/1.8, 24mm (wide), 1/1.76″, 1.8µm, Dual Pixel

Wide-Angle Camera
12 MP, f/2.2, 123˚ (ultrawide), 1.12µm

Cover display
3.4 inches, 720 x 748


  • Bigger Cover Screen is excellent
  • Great performance
  • Gapless hinge design is much nicer
  • Feels premium and durable

  • Cameras are pretty mediocre
  • Can get a much better phone for $999

Hardware & Design: Flippin’ Great

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 laying face down on a table while unfolded
Joe Fedewa / How-To Geek

The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 looks very similar to its predecessor, the Galaxy Z Flip 4, at first glance. It has the same glass and metal body, with a glossy finish that comes in eight colors. Cream, Lavender, Graphite, and Mint (the model you’re seeing in this review) are available in most places, while Gray, Blue, Green, and Yellow are exclusive to Samsung’s website. The phone has an aluminum frame that is either black or silver, depending on the back color.

One of the most noticeable differences between the Galaxy Z Flip 5 and the Galaxy Z Flip 4 is the hinge. The Galaxy Z Flip 5 has a redesigned hinge that allows the phone to fold completely flat without leaving a gap between the two halves. The thickness when folded is 15.1mm, whereas the Z Flip 4 was 17.1mm. It’s slightly thinner, but more importantly, it just feels and looks better this way. There’s also less risk of dust or debris getting into the hinge mechanism, though it can still get sandwiched between the displays.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 fully closed with the Z Flip 4 laying on top with a hinge gap
Joe Fedewa / How-To Geek

The new hinge still supports Flex Mode, which lets you use the phone at different angles, like a laptop or a mini tripod. The hinge is sturdy and smooth, and it stays in place at any angle you choose. However, it’s still loose enough that you can flip the phone open with one hand. I don’t think Samsung recommends this, but come on, it’s a flip phone. You know you want to do it.

The biggest upgrade this time around is the much larger Cover Screen. Samsung has greatly improved the size and functionality of the Cover Screen, putting it more in line with the Motorola Razr series. The Galaxy Z Flip 5 has a 3.4-inch Super AMOLED cover screen, while the Galaxy Z Flip 4 has a barely useable 1.9-inch Cover Screen.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 cover screen vs the Z Flip 4
Joe Fedewa / How-To Geek

The larger Cover Screen makes a world of difference. Seeing notifications and interacting with them is much easier without opening the phone. You can also swipe left to access widgets for music controls, weather, alarms, timer, and even full-blown apps through a Good Lock module. Swiping down gives you access to quick settings such as brightness, volume, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, flashlight, and Do Not Disturb mode.

The new Cover Screen is easily one of the best features of the Galaxy Z Flip 5. It feels almost like you have a smartwatch on the outside of your phone. I found myself using the Cover Screen much more than I did with previous Z Flip models. I can honestly say it did allow me to do more without opening the phone completely. That’s a win.

Rounding out the design, the power button and volume rocker are located on the right side of the phone, the SIM card tray is on the left side, and the USB-C port is on the bottom. There is no headphone jack or microSD card slot on the Galaxy Z Flip 5. The phone also has a side-mounted fingerprint scanner integrated into the power button. It’s a fast and reliable scanner, but the flush-mounted design makes it hard to feel.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 standing upright with no hinge gap next to the Z Flip 4
Joe Fedewa / How-To Geek

The Galaxy Z Flip 5 is IPX8 rated for water resistance, which means it can survive being submerged in up to 1.5 meters of fresh water for up to 30 minutes. That’s pretty great for a foldable phone, but that “X” means it’s not dust resistant. Sand, dirt, or other particles could damage the hinge or the screen. It’s the sacrifice you make when using bleeding-edge tech.

Overall, I really like the design of the Z Flip 5. The two-tone front of the Z Flip 4 was cool, but the edge-to-edge black glass that illuminates to show the Cover Screen is a little more mature and elegant looking.

Display(s): Mostly the Same

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 partially folded open with the screen turned on
Joe Fedewa / How-To Geek

The main display of the Galaxy Z Flip 5 is a 6.7-inch FHD+ Dynamic AMOLED screen with a resolution of 2640 x 1080 pixels and a 22:9 aspect ratio. The display has a refresh rate of 120Hz, which makes scrolling and animations smoother and more responsive. The display also supports HDR for enhanced contrast and colors.

The display is covered by a layer of ultra-thin glass (UTG) that makes it more durable and scratch-resistant than plastic screens. However, it is still not as strong as regular glass screens, which is important to understand. The phone comes with a pre-installed screen protector that adds some extra protection, but it also makes the screen feel less smooth and more prone to fingerprints. Again, something you have to accept with this bleeding-edge tech.

Foldable display crease on the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 and Z Flip 4
Joe Fedewa / How-To Geek

The display has a crease in the middle where it folds, which is inevitable for foldable phones. The crease is visible when the screen is off and when you look at it from certain angles, but it’s not very noticeable when using the phone normally. The new hinge design also makes the crease feel slightly less pronounced than in previous Z Flip models.

The display quality of the Galaxy Z Flip 5 is excellent, as expected from a Samsung AMOLED panel. The colors are vibrant and accurate, the contrast is high, the brightness is sufficient for outdoor use, and the viewing angles are wide. My only gripes are due to the build materials—foldable displays just don’t feel as nice as glass, and it’s a fingerprint magnet. The Cover Screen display feels much nicer simply because it’s not plastic, and it’s brighter in outdoor use, which is great for quickly seeing what’s going on.

Person holding the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 with the screen open
Joe Fedewa / How-To Geek

The one thing that continues to be quirky about the display is the 22:9 aspect ratio. It’s a very tall and narrow display, which can be pretty awkward to use. You’ll definitely want to use One-Handed Mode and maybe try a launcher like Niagara Launcher to improve the experience.

Software: One UI Gonna One UI

Flex Mode in the YouTube app on the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5
Joe Fedewa / How-To Geek

The Galaxy Z Flip 5 runs on Android 13 with Samsung’s One UI 5.1.1 on top. I have said many times that I’m not a fan of One UI. I think it’s the weakest part of using Galaxy devices. However, it’s clear that Samsung has put a lot of thought into how One UI works on foldables.

One thing that I like about One UI is all the lock screen customization options you get, which also overflows into the new Cover Screen. You can customize the Cover Screen like you would a watch face. There are plenty of clock and font options as well as colors and background images.

Speaking of the Cover Screen, it’s clearly an answer to Motorola, but Samsung took a very different approach. Motorola’s front screen is essentially a secondary home screen with widgets and app icons. Samsung’s is more like a smartwatch with swipeable widgets. I have never used a Motorola Razr, but I think I would prefer the Z Flip’s method. Glancable widgets are better suited to a screen of this size.

The aforementioned Flex Mode software has also been improved this time around. Now you can decide which apps will move to the top half of the screen and show controls on the bottom half when the phone is folded. The controls aren’t super useful for most apps, but it’s nice to be able to push content to the top or bottom half of the screen for apps you might use with the phone folded slightly.

Close up of the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 hinge
Joe Fedewa / How-To Geek

One thing that remains absent from the Z Flip series is Samsung DeX support. For reasons unknown, Samsung has never included this in any Z Flip phone. The Z Fold and many other Galaxy devices can use the feature, but Z Flip owners are still left out in the cold, despite running on the same hardware under the hood.

The biggest win for One UI is that Samsung promises three years of major Android updates and four years of security updates for the Galaxy Z Flip 5. It will get Android 14, 15, and 16 in the future. I may not love the look of One UI, but it’s hard to complain with that level of software support.

Cameras: The Weak Spot

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 taking photos using the cover screen as the viewfinder
Joe Fedewa / How-To Geek

The Galaxy Z Flip 5 cameras are not very different from those of the Galaxy Z Flip 4. They offer good performance in most situations but are not outstanding compared to other (and typically cheaper) flagship phones. That’s one of the most disappointing things about the Galaxy Z Flip 5.

The main camera takes sharp and detailed photos in daylight with natural colors, good dynamic range, and accurate white balance. The only other camera you get on the rear is a wide-angle camera. It’s a bit annoying that you can get four or five cameras with Samsung’s non-folding phones for a similar price. The main camera can also record 4K videos at up to 60 frames per second, with good stabilization and audio quality.

The selfie camera takes decent selfies in good lighting, but it struggles in low light or with complex backgrounds. Thankfully, you don’t really need to use the selfie camera for selfies. The big Cover Screen makes it very easy to take selfies with the “rear” cameras. Unlike previous Z Flip models, you have no problem setting up the shot with the Cover Screen.

Don’t overlook the handiness of the folding screen for photo purposes. You basically have an instant tripod wherever you go. It’s perfect for setting down on a table for a hands-free photo or video or using it as a viewfinder to hold the phone in awkward positions. I always miss this when I’m using a non-foldable phone.

The Galaxy Z Flip 5 cameras are not bad, but they’re not impressive either. They are adequate for casual and social media use, but they’re not comparable to the cameras of other flagship phones such as the Samsung Galaxy S23, the Google Pixel 7, or the iPhone 14. That’s disappointing for a device costing $1,000, but the price clearly compensates more for the foldable display than the camera prowess.

Performance & Battery: Improved

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 with the camera app open
Joe Fedewa / How-To Geek

The Galaxy Z Flip 5 is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor, which is one of the most powerful and efficient chipsets available for Android phones in 2023. The phone also has 8GB of RAM and 256 or 512GB of internal storage.

Performance has been excellent for everyday tasks such as browsing, messaging, social media, streaming, and general multitasking. The phone handles everything smoothly and quickly, without any lag or stutter. The 120Hz refresh rate also makes things feel more fluid and responsive.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 sitting halfway flipped open
Joe Fedewa / How-To Geek

The Galaxy Z Flip 5 has a dual-battery system that combines two separate batteries into one with a total capacity of 3,700mAh. This is the same size as last year’s Galaxy Z Flip 4’s battery, but still smaller than most other flagship phones’ batteries. I was pleasantly surprised by the battery life. My experience with the Z Flip 3 was not good in this department, so I’m happy to see a marked improvement two generations later.

The phone supports fast charging with a 25W charger (which isn’t included in the box). It can charge from zero to 50% in about half an hour, and from zero to 100% in about an hour and a half. The phone also supports 15W wireless charging and 4.5W reverse wireless charging that lets you charge other devices, such as earbuds or Galaxy smartwatches, by placing them on the back of the phone.

Should You Buy the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5?

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 laying on a table flipped closed
Joe Fedewa / How-To Geek

It would be very easy to say the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 is the best flip phone yet, but Motorola is doing great stuff with the Razr series. The Z Flip 5 may not have had one of its best features—the massive Cover Screen—if Motorola didn’t push it. Still, Samsung is Samsung, and it’s hard to argue against years of refinement and superior software support.

The Galaxy Z Flip 5 is not perfect by any means. Its cameras are nothing to write home about, and the price puts it in a weird spot. Sure, $1,000 may be cheap for a foldable phone, but you’re also getting much less than you would from a Galaxy S23 Ultra or even Galaxy S23+. It’s really a question of what you value most.

I love the idea of the Z Flip series more than the reality of it. At the end of the day, the most the Z Flip can ever be is a standard-sized smartphone. Even with the drastically improved Cover Screen, you’re going to flip the phone open for most tasks—and that gets tiresome. The Galaxy Z Fold form factor is much more life-changing than the Z Flip.

If you’re looking for the straight-up best Android phone money can buy, the Galaxy Z Flip 5 is not it. But if you’re okay with a very good Android phone that can fold into a very compact size and happens to be very cool, you’ve found the right device.

And if you’re interested in Samsung’s other foldable phone, check out our full review of the Galaxy Z Fold 5.


Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5

$1120 $1270 Save $150

The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 is a flip-fold style foldable with a big outside display and a small compact size.

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