One of the first thoughts around foldable smartphones is a high price tag, but that tune is changing. Today, Samsung is officially announcing the Galaxy Z Flip 3, its first foldable smartphone to carry a triple-digit price.

Unlike its most expensive counterpart, the Galaxy Z Fold 3, the Flip series is designed to imitate the form factor of a classic flip phone. You can’t do much from the outside, but you’ll end up with a smaller, more pocketable device that still packs a sizable display.

Getting right to the internal display, it’s a 6.7-inch FHD+ display just like last time around, though now with a faster 120Hz refresh rate. When folded, there is still a cover display, and this time, it’s a much bigger 1.9-inch panel that’s big enough to show a full text message or display additional information on a widget. The Flip 3 comes in at a tiny 72.2 x 86.4 x 17.1mm when folded up and weighs 183g, just a little more than the standard Galaxy S21. Like the Fold 3, Samsung also says the plastic outer layer of the Flip’s main display is 80% stronger, but it won’t work with the S Pen. The hardware is also IPX8 water-resistant.

Looking at the spec sheet, there’s a Snapdragon 888 and its associated 5G at the core, mmWave included. That’s paired with 8GB of RAM and either 128GB or 256GB of internal storage. The package is powered by a 3,300 mAh battery that accepts 15W wired charging and 10W wireless.

In the camera department, Samsung is offering a 10MP selfie camera on the internal display with a duo of 12MP sensors on the outside. One is a standard lens with the other ultrawide, both using Corning DX glass.

Rounding out the spec sheet, there’s NFC and MST for mobile payments (depending on region), stereo speakers, and a fingerprint sensor on the side for biometrics. Connectivity includes a single SIM slot and an eSIM, too, depending on region.

As for colors, Samsung will sell the Flip 3 in black, green, lavender, and cream, with gray, white, and pink colors available exclusively from Samsung also has some unorthodox cases with bright colors, straps, and keyrings available.

The big story with the Galaxy Z Flip 3, though, is most certainly the price tag. This is the first mainstream foldable to crack the “triple-digit barrier,” dropping from the $1,200-$1,400 prices of previous generations to $999. That places its price right alongside the Galaxy S21+, a device with similar specs and the same 6.7-inch display.

As we covered in a review last year, the Flip’s form factor comes with some inherent disadvantages, but also some notable advantages too. If it seems worthwhile to you, pre-orders start today and run through August 26, with the release just one day later. Those early orders come with a $150 Samsung credit, and you can trade in up to four devices for up to $500 off the phone’s cost.

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Ben Schoon

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