Samsung regularly debuts new smartphone series alongside new foldable phones; the Galaxy Z Flip came with the Galaxy S20, the Galaxy Z Fold 2 was shown off alongside the Galaxy Note 20, and so on. Well, it seems the Galaxy S21 might buck that trend.
We were expecting the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 2 to come alongside the S21, but according to Korean news site The Elec, which has historically been accurate about information on Samsung, the Galaxy Z Flip 2 has been removed from the launch lineup.
This is supposedly being done to avoid competition between products internally, as the S21 Ultra and the Z Flip 2 are likely to be in the same price segment. Instead, apparently the foldable phone will come out after 'Q1', so from April onwards.
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It's worth pointing out that there's been no official confirmation that the Galaxy Z Flip 2 was landing alongside the Galaxy S21, that's just what we've been expecting, so this is in effect just a rumor that builds on another rumor.
The Galaxy S21 release date is also up in the air - while February would follow tradition, many leaks say January.
In September, analysts predicted the Galaxy Z Flip 2 could come out in late 2021, so this news isn't too much of a shock.
It sounds like Samsung is readying a big shake-up of its high-end smartphones for 2021. Between the supposed Galaxy Z Flip 2 delay, the possible early S21 launch, and rumors that the Galaxy Note series may have gone the way of the dodo, the company's 2021 might be quite different to previous years.
Another Z Flip rumor
Just after The Elec's report launched, regular leaker Ice Universe posted on Chinese social media platform Weibo with some extra information on the Galaxy Z Flip 2... or Galaxy Z Flip 3, as they call it for some reason.
According to Ice Universe, the foldable phone will have a 120Hz screen, just like the Z Fold 2 - this higher refresh rate will make on-screen motion look a little smoother, at the expense of battery life.
The leaker also states the phone will have a narrower frame - presumably they mean it'll be thinner, though they could also be referring to the gap between the screen and the edges of the phone - and will be 'cheaper', and we assume they're comparing it to the original Z Flip on that front.
Since the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip cost $1,380 / £1,300 (around AU$2,050), we imagine a lower price is necessary for more people to consider buying the Flip 2. We wouldn't imagine the price will be hugely lower though, maybe just by around $100 / £100 or even less.
Ice Universe ends their leak on a final, cryptic 'within 1w' - we're not too sure what this refers to, and the actual meaning is likely buried by the fact this message was machine translated from Chinese.
If this leak is to be believed - and we're keen to believe it, seeing as how Ice Universe has a good track record - the Z Flip 2 will be a modest improvement in a few ways on its predecessor, though there's a lot more still to learn.