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Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2 battery life test: unhinged

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The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2 is officially here. Without engaging in the usual puns about the “unfolding” feature, we’ll take a surgical approach examining one of the key areas in this device – the battery life. The whole point of these foldable phones is having more screen estate but bigger screens usually require more energy. It’s time to see how this next-generation foldable from Samsung performs in our rigorous battery testing procedures. The Galaxy Z Fold 2 sports a 4,500mAh battery, the same capacity can be found in the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra. It’s a very peculiar case because, although the Galaxy Z Fold 2 has a bigger screen at 7.6 inches, there are actually fewer pixels inside compared to the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra (~3.9M vs ~4.4M). Both phones have almost identical hardware, performance-wise, so a comparison makes sense.

Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra Battery: 5,000 mAh
Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra Battery: 4,500 mAh
Samsung Galaxy Fold Battery: 4,380 mAh
Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2 Battery: 4,500 mAhALSO READ:
Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2 Unboxing and Hands-on
Best Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2 5G deals and prices
Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2 vs Galaxy Fold
Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2 vs Galaxy Note 20 Ultra

PhoneArena Browsing Battery Test Results

And here comes the unhinged part. Browsing on that big flexible AMOLED screen takes quite a toll on the battery of the Galaxy Z Fold 2. The phone scores 7 hours in our browsing test which is 5 hours shy of both the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra and the Galaxy S20 Ultra. Strangely, the 120Hz display mode doesn’t change much. Browsing time goes down by approximately 20 minutes but the overall picture in this test is not thrilling. 

PhoneArena YouTube Video Playback Battery Test Results

In our video playback test the Galaxy Z Fold 2 is on par with its non-foldable sibling – the Note 20 Ultra. That’s not a huge achievement, however, given the fact that the Note 20 Ultra didn’t perform well in the YouTube video test in the first place. When you take a look at the table and the Galaxy S20’s result, it all becomes painfully obvious. 7 hours of continuous video playback time isn’t a disaster but it’s not great either.

PhoneArena 3D Gaming Battery Test Results

The Galaxy Z Fold 2 is a powerful device and gaming on a foldable phone is something really interesting. Plenty of screen estate, plenty of power, plenty of grip. Sadly, battery life is far from plenty with a score of around 5 hours. Again, this result is almost identical to what the Note 20 Ultra was able to achieve at 120Hz (60Hz test results coming soon). 

Conclusion

Before you rush out angrily to Samsung’s headquarters, demanding your precious battery life back, there’s another angle to this story. The Galaxy Z Fold 2 features a secondary screen that’s sufficient for many day-to-day tasks. You probably won’t unfold the device as much as you might think, which will lead to better battery life during normal daily use. Furthermore, The Galaxy Z Fold 2 managed to duplicate the Note 20 Ultra’s result in our battery tests. It’s an achievement by itself, given the huge 7.6-inch display of the Z Fold 2. And if you’re making a buying decision between the Note 20 Ultra and the Z Fold 2, the above results take battery life out of the equation. There’s also the fact that nobody will buy the Galaxy Z Fold 2 for its battery life alone. Yeah, it’d have been nice to have a bit more juice in this $2000 phone but it’s at least on par with other ultra-premium devices out there. In the end, it all boils down to one simple question – do you want that foldable experience? And are you willing to pay $700 on top of the already great Galaxy Note 20 Ultra to get it?

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