Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 could keep the Z Fold 3's worst feature

While the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 was well-received, one issue we found in our testing was with the front-facing camera when the device was opened up - it was an under-display camera, which is pretty novel, but resulting pictures weren't very sharp.

Well it sounds like Samsung isn't giving up on the feature, because apparently the Galaxy Z Fold 4 - and also Galaxy Z Flip 4 - could get the feature. This comes from a post on South Korean social media site Naver from a leaker we hear from now and then, who shared select details on the two upcoming phones.

Apparently the Galaxy Z Fold 4 won't just have one under-display camera, like the Z Fold 3, but two - presumably that means the front display will have one too, not that the main screen will have two selfie cameras, though that's not clear. 

The leaker also says the Z Fold 4's cameras will be similar to the Galaxy S22's - current rumors suggest that'll have a 50MP main camera joined by 12MP telephoto and 12MP ultra-wide companions. It sounds like the Z Fold 4 won't get whatever top camera specs go to the Galaxy S22 Ultra.

The Galaxy Z Flip 4 is being tested both with, and without, an under-display camera, according to the Naver post - it says prototypes with both forms of front-facing camera exist. The leaker adds that the screen dimensions, at least for the outer screen, remain unchanged from the Z Flip 3.

Finally, the post says that both phones will have improved waterproofing and dustproofing, as well as redesigned hinges that are lighter than their predecessors.


Analysis: doubling down isn't a bad thing

Some people might read the above news, roll their eyes, and think 'why are they doubling down on arguably the worst part of the Z Fold 4?' and that was our initial reaction too. But it might not be bad news.

The Z Fold 3's front-facing camera felt like an early test of a concept that many companies, like Xiaomi and ZTE, have done a bit better. And Samsung itself can probably do better - tech always improves over time, with companies spending more time and money improving innovations, and under-display cameras will probably be the same.

So if we see the Galaxy Z Fold 4 and maybe Z Flip 4 come with under-display snappers, the sensors will probably be higher-res, and paired with display tech that better covers the lenses when not in use.

In other words, the Galaxy Z Fold 4 selfie cameras will almost certainly be much better than the Z Fold 3 ones. Will they be as good as standard punch-hole or notch rivals? Well, we wouldn't go that far just yet, but it likely won't be a disappointment unlike in the Z Fold 3.

We're still likely about 9 months out from the Galaxy Z Fold 4 and Z Flip 4 launches, which will probably take place in August 2022, so Samsung has loads of time to refine its under-display tech.

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