Samsung unveils new Galaxy Z Flip4 and Fold4 phones, starting from $1699 in New Zealand

Samsung's new Flip4 and Fold4 devices
The new Galaxy Buds2 Pro earbuds were also revealed. Photo credit: Supplied / Samsung

Samsung has unveiled its latest foldable and flippable mobile phones at its Unpacked 2022 event overnight, NZ time.

The Galaxy Z Fold4 and Flip4 are available to be pre-ordered in Aotearoa from Friday August 11. The Flip4 starts at $1699, while the larger Fold4 comes with a hefty $2849 price tag.

During the event, the Korean tech giant also unveiled an updated version of its wireless earphones, the Galaxy Buds2 Pro. When released in New Zealand, those will retail for $379, making them a mid-range option here.

While the Buds2 Pro will compete against the likes of Technics, Huawei, Oppo, Apple, JBL and more, it has a clearer run with its non-standard phone range.

Samsung's S22 phones square off against other flagship models in New Zealand like Apple's iPhone 13 range and Oppo's Find X4 Pro. But there's no one else selling folding phones here, and with the new fourth-generation of devices being launched, Samsung is dominating the market of those seeking something a little bit different from their phones.

"Samsung Galaxy foldables are built on the foundation of our openness philosophy, enabling new possibilities with complete customisation both inside and out," Dr TM Roh, president and head of mobile experience business at Samsung, said.

"The next foldable devices offer unparalleled mobile experiences that meet the needs of our most dynamic users."

That has seen the brand sell millions of the devices while its competitors have still to embrace the market.

For example, Apple has long been rumoured to be working on a foldable iPhone, but it appears the US tech giant is still some way from launching one.

That gives Samsung the opportunity to innovate and make incremental changes to its devices.

The Flip4, the smaller of the two phones, gets fewer big upgrades compared to its Fold4 sibling, but it does significantly improve on last year's model.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip4
Photo credit: Supplied / Samsung

Not only do the clamshell phones get a larger battery - a 3700mAh offering that supports super fast charging - the hinges are also slimmer than before.

The phone's small cover screen also gets an update with a new Quick Shot feature allowing selfies and video recording to be started without opening up the phone.

Flex mode then kicks in when the phone is unfolded to ensure seamless recording.

A 65 percent brighter sensor ensures the photo quality is better than ever, while the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 chip ensures the Flip4 remains among the fastest Android devices on the market.

That fast-charging battery also ensures a quick juice can see you through the day, with 50 percent battery life added in just 30 minutes.

The Fold4, more designed for power users who like to multitask, gets some impressive new hardware.

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4
Photo credit: Supplied / Samsung

That includes a 50MP wide lens camera, up from just 12MP on last year's model, elevating it to true flagship level.

Larger pixel size, a 23 percent brighter sensor and enhanced processing power gives better overall pictures as well as clearer images at night.

The main screen is also better, with a brighter 7.6-inch version that has 120Hz adaptive refresh rate and an under-display camera that is even more hidden that last year's acclaimed effort.

It's also the first device to be shipped with a special version of Android 12 created by Google for larger-screen experiences like the Fold4.

A new taskbar makes it look similar to a Windows desktop while multitasking becomes more intuitive with swipe gesturing.

Samsung's partnerships with Google and Microsoft also take multitasking to the next level. 

Google apps including Chrome and Gmail now support drag-and-drop, allowing users to quickly copy and paste links, photos and more from one app to another.

Meanwhile Microsoft's full Office suite and Outlook take advantage of the foldable display, providing more information on the screen and faster ways to interact with the content.

Samsung's S Pen stylus also works with the Fold4, with the new case and holder providing a better storage experience compared to the Fold3.

Like the Flip4, the bigger of the two devices gets a slimmer hinge as well as the powerful Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 chip.

It also weighs slightly less than last year's model and has slimmer bezels around the screen to create more work space.

The durability of both devices is also improved from last year, with Armour aluminium frames and Corning Gorilla Glass Victus+ on the cover screen and rear glass ensuring an accidental drop shouldn't kill your phone.

Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Pro
Photo credit: Supplied / Samsung

The company's new earbuds promise up to five hours of playback time with noise cancellation switched on, with a further 18 hours juice in the case. Users can get up to eight hours, with a further 29 in the case with noise cancellation off.

Available in graphite, white and new bora purple, the earbuds offer 24bit high-fidelity for the first time on Galaxy devices running OneUI 4.0 or higher. 360 Audio, similar to Apple's Spatial Audio, is also new functionality.