In the past 10 years, we’ve seen smartphones evolve from a candy-bar communicating device into a fully-fledged entertainment hub that you can bring anywhere. Some even go as far as morphing them into desktop-like devices to enhance productivity. Due to the endless pursuit of smartphone innovation every year (and the fact that greater cameras and performance equate to innovation), the excitement of a new phone being released has gone down the drain. That is until folding phones were introduced last year. Foldable phones may be still at its infancy but top brands have pioneered them into commercially available devices. With that said, here are the best folding phones you can buy right now and will become available soon in the Philippines.
Top Folding Phones Available in the Philippines
1. Samsung Galaxy Fold – P109,990
The oldest folding phone in this list is Samsung’s Galaxy Fold. While the Galaxy Fold went under a “second screening” after reports regarding the display breaking (and the unintentional peeling of the screen protector), Samsung came back with the phone having better durability against dust and lint. Currently available at P109,990 in the country, you already get 12GB RAM, 512GB internal storage, and Snapdragon 855. The device also features a total of five cameras — 10MP+10MP for the inner cameras and 12MP+16MP+12MP for the outer cameras.
Most of you might not be a fan of the Galaxy Fold but we think that this is the best folding phone that you should purchase. Yes, it’s a bulky phone when closed but it doesn’t really matter that much when the smaller 4.6″ outer screen operates like a regular compact smartphone. As for the 7.3″ inner screen, it’s big enough to make the device two-hand friendly while not blowing it up into a fully-fledged tablet. What do we mean by that? Your thumbs can still reach the halves of the screen without needing hand gymnastics.
The Galaxy Fold may be the best folding right now but it’s far from perfect. We still hate the huge notch and we hope to see the integration of the S-pen in the future.
2. Huawei Mate Xs – P139,999
If you’re not sold with the Fold, Huawei Mate Xs is the closest thing to it. At P139,999, it’s the most expensive folding phone in the country. But paying for that premium price means getting 5G, incredibly fast charging, the latest Kirin 990 from Huawei, high-spec cameras, and two large screens.
Unlike the Galaxy Fold, the Mate Xs folds outwards, making the outer screen also the secondary screen. As a result, the main 8″ display only shrinks down to 6.6″ to retain that familiar smartphone experience. On top of that, there’s no notch. The 40MP+8MP+16MP cameras are located on the back of the screen which will force you to use the device folded when taking a selfie.
You do have to be extra careful with the Mate Xs. Because the screen is made of plastic and is exposed naturally, scratches develop easily.
3. Samsung Galaxy Z Flip – P79,990
We’ve had folding phones way before smartphones were born. They were simply called flip phones. Nothing beats that slamming sound when you’re about to drop the call. But this year, Samsung re-imagined that experience and introduced the Galaxy Z Flip. Instead of releasing the 2nd generation of the Galaxy Fold, the company released a new phone with a clamshell design.
At nearly half the price of the Mate Xs, you get a faster Snapdragon 855+ than the Galaxy Fold, a narrow screen than most phones today, and the nostalgia of slamming the device after use. Technically, there’s a second screen on the outside but the 1.1″ outer display is only made to display tidbits of information, like time, date, and notifications.
The Galaxy Z Flip has a few tricks up its sleeve like making the halves of the screen work differently within an app, however, it’s the convenience of having a small phone to pocket wherever you go, and transforming it into a full-screen phone when you need it that makes you want to buy it, even if the battery life is from two years ago.
4. Moto Razr 2019 – $1500USD (Coming Soon)
Before the Galaxy Flip, Moto Razr 2019 was announced and released first in the US. Among the list of folding phones, the new Razr is the least capable. It features a mid-range Snapdragon 710, a 5MP selfie camera, a 16MP main camera with a depth lens, and a small 2510mAh battery. To be honest, only the large external screen is what it has going for versus the Galaxy Z Flip.
In spite of all that, it’s still the folding phone that generated more interest than the Galaxy Z Flip. That’s because of the nostalgia trip that it comes with. The build is well-suited for a 2020 phone but the clamshell design still reminds you of that Moto Razr from the early 2000s. Motorola even has a theme that transforms the user interface into the keypad of the old Razr.
Moto Philippines has teased the Razr 2019 earlier and we’re pretty sure it’s going to arrive anytime soon. Is it the best folding phone to recommend? Not really. But it’s a folding phone that some users won’t mind purchasing.
Honorable Mentions: Xiaomi Mix Flex and OPPO Foldable Phone (In development)
Aside from Huawei, Xiaomi and OPPO are the other two Chinese smartphone brands that are developing foldable phones. OPPO has not confirmed anything about its folding phone but it did show a prototype unit at MWC 2019 that highly resembles the Mate Xs.
As for Xiaomi’s Mix Flex, it’s been teased by Xiaomi’s Co-founder Lin Bin before. We expect the Mix Flex to have a wider screen than what folding phones have right now, and with the display folding from both sides, the middle screen serves as the standard smartphone display.
There’s no release date for either of the two folding devices yet.