Hey look out! There's a new phone in town.
Well, actually there are four. After months of public speculation and fervent rumours, Samsung has officially revealed four new premium devices. Joining the S Series are the Galaxy S20, S20+ and S20 Ultra and pulling up a chair in the foldables category is the snappy Galaxy Z Flip.
The announcements were made at the company's greatly anticipated Unpacked event in San Francisco on 11 February, along with updates about 5G, ongoing partnerships with household names like XBOX and Netflix and the launch of powered-up successors to the Galaxy Buds, the Galaxy Buds+. With a magical wonderland of hideaway hinges, 8K video capture and adaptive microphone systems before us, let's get straight to it...
Galaxy Z Flip
First to hit the dance floor was the Galaxy Z Flip, introduced by Head of UK Mobile Product Marketing Rebecca Hirst. It's the second of Samsung's foldables to be released in the last six months, following the launch of the fabled Galaxy Fold in Autumn 2019.
Like its older sibling, the Z Flip is positioned to stoke the growing appetite for devices that reinvent the mould in terms of size and form, this time closing down to a tidy 73.6mm x 87.4mm compact with a 1.1'' Super AMOLED cover display. But unlike the book-style design of the Fold, the Z Flip mirrors a clam, reminiscent of the flip phones that some of the more nostalgic among us may remember from the early noughties.
That's as far as the comparisons can go, however. When opened, the Z Flip packs a whopping 6.7'' FHD+ Dynamic AMOLED display with minimised bezels and no notches. The free-stop Hideaway Hinge, which lets you set the device to any angle, opens up the potential for night photography and hyperlapse videos without a tripod, while Flex Mode splits the screen into two distinct areas – one for viewing and the other for interacting. It's also the world's first foldable display to feature a hole punch camera. You can find the full specs here or join the Z Flip discussion on the Community.
Galaxy S20, S20+ and S20 Ultra
Next up was Samsung's power trio – the S20, S20+ and S20 Ultra, which is the first 5G flagship line-up we've seen from the company. In a word? Camera. The newcomers boast AI camera technologies, the largest image sensor yet and are capable of pro-grade filming. The S20 and S20+ both come with impressive 64MP snappers while the S20 Ultra brags an eye-watering 108MP.
All three offer 8K video shooting, with AI motion analysis and anti-rolling stabilisation for enhanced Super Steady mode. During the presentation, snippets from filmmakers Sam Evans and Jimmy Chin showed off what this could mean for creators and adventurers alike, and the entire Unpacked event was streamed live using S20 models. Head of US Mobile Product Management Drew Blackard also noted the impressive zoom capabilities of the new gear. Space Zoom combines Hybrid Optic and Super Resolution Zoom technologies, enabling 30X zoom on the S20 and S20+ and up to 100X on the Ultra.
Each of the new S20 handsets come with a powerful 64-bit octa-core processor, up to 1.5TB of storage and all-day battery power. Partnerships with Spotify, YouTube Premium and Xbox signal enhanced optimisation for gaming, streaming and entertainment, and there's even access to some exclusive content from Netflix.
We're also pleased to see even more developments on the accessibility front. The S20 supports Google's Live Caption, which captions videos in real time, while ambient sound amplification and high contrast colours for improved hearing and display visibility come courtesy of One UI 2.
You can join the conversation about the new S20 range right here on the Community.
Closing out the party was the new generation of Galaxy Buds, the Galaxy Buds+. Along with AKG-powered 2-way speakers and an adaptive 3-mic system, the new earbuds offer impressive battery life that outstrips their predecessors. The Buds+ give up to 11 hours of play time, or 22 with the charging case. If you're in a rush, you can snap up around an hour of juice from just three minutes of charging too. They pair seamlessly with smart devices on Android and iOS and with lightweight materials and splash-resistant technology, they're as ready for that after-work jog as you are.
The new devices embody the convergence of 5G, AI and IoT, which President and Head of Mobile Communications Business Dr. TM Roh named as the three most important technologies of our time. It echoes the sentiments conveyed by Samsung Consumer Electronics Division President and CEO H.S. Kim at the Consumer Electronics Show in Vegas just over a month ago. At the keynote address Kim heralded the new decade as the 'Age of Experience', a movement that will see the proliferation of hyperconnected, highly personalised technologies that understand and actively intuit the needs of human beings.
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