Dimensions: 162.3 x 79 x 8.6mm
Screen size: 6.8-inch
Resolution: 1440 x 3120
Chipset: Snapdragon 8 Gen 3
Rear camera: 200MP+50MP+12MP+10MP
Front camera: 12MP
The Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra is extremely powerful and has a bright screen and a premium build, but its new AI features don't add much, and it lacks the display versatility of the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5. Still, it also costs less.
- Great cameras
- Titanium frame
- Very powerful
- AI is often useless
- Big and heavy
- Terrible menus
Dimensions: 154.9 x 129.9 x 6.1mm (unfolded)
Screen size: 7.6-inch (main screen)
Resolution: 1812 x 2176 (main screen)
Chipset: Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 for Galaxy
Rear camera: 50MP+ 12MP+ 10MP
Front camera: 10MP+ 4MP
The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 is one of the best foldable phones you can buy and a great choice if that's what you want, but its core specs can't match the S24 Ultra, and it costs more.
- A phone and a tablet in one
- It folds flat
- Snappy performance
- Worse cameras than S24 Ultra
- Less power than the S24 Ultra
We were confident it would be a winner even before launch, as Samsung’s Ultra models always rank among the best phones of a given year, as well as being among the best Samsung phones, but this isn’t Samsung’s only top-end handset.
The company also makes foldables, and last year’s Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 is currently its most expensive phone. So how much cheaper is the Galaxy S24 Ultra? And how does it compare in other ways?
Based both on the specs and our impressions in our Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra review and our Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 review, here's how these two phones stack up. And for more Samsung options, check out our Samsung Galaxy S24 review and our hands-on Samsung Galaxy S24 Plus review.
Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra vs Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5: specs comparison
Below, you'll find full specs for both the Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra and the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5, so you can see how they compare at a glance.
|Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra
|Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5
|162.3 x 79 x 8.6mm
|154.9 x 129.9 x 6.1mm (unfolded), 154.9 x 67.1 x 13.4mm (folded)
|7.6-inch AMOLED (main), 6.2-inch AMOLED (cover)
|1440 x 3120
|1812 x 2176 (main), 904 x 2316 (cover)
|Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3
|Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2
|200MP main, 12MP ultra-wide, 10MP telephoto (3x zoom), 50MP periscope (5x zoom)
|50MP main, 12MP ultra-wide, 10MP telephoto (3x zoom)
|256GB / 512GB / 1TB
|256GB / 512GB / 1TB
|45W wired, 15W wireless, 4.5W reverse wireless
|25W wired, 5W wireless, 4.5W reverse wireless
|Titanium Violet, Titanium Gray, Titanium Black, Titanium Yellow, Titanium Blue, Titanium Green, Titanium Orange
|Icy Blue, Phantom Black, Cream, Gray, Blue
Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra vs Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5: price and availability
The Samsung Galaxy S24 line – including the Ultra – was announced on January 17, with the phones shipping on January 31. So it's out now and you can grab one of the best Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra deals if you want to buy it.
The Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra is being sold globally, so it's widely available, but it’s also very expensive.
Specifically, the Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra price starts at $1,299.99 / £1,249 / AU$2,199, which gets you 256GB of storage. The price rises to $1,419.99 / £1,349 / AU$2,399 for 512GB, and $1,659.99 / £1,549 / AU$2,799 for 1TB, with every model having 12GB of RAM.
As for the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5, that of course is out now, having launched back in July of 2023. It starts at $1,799.99 / £1,749 / AU$2,599 for 256GB of storage, rising to $1,919.99 / £1,869 / AU$2,799 for 512GB, and $2,159.99 / £2,049 / AU$3,149 for 1TB. In all cases that’s with 12GB of RAM.
So that makes the Z Fold 5’s starting price $500 / £500 / AU$400 higher. So the Z Fold 5 remains Samsung’s most expensive phone – and by a significant margin – at least until the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 6 arrives.
The only caveat here is that being an older handset, the Z Fold 5 can often be found for less than its official price, but it still typically costs more than the S24 Ultra.
Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra vs Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5: design
Since the Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra is a conventional, candy bar-style phone and the Z Fold 5 is a foldable, these handsets look very different.
The Galaxy S24 Ultra looks a lot like the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra, complete with an angular design and a quad-lens camera, with each lens individually jutting out of the glass back.
The Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra design includes some changes though, such as a new titanium frame. It also has an IP68 rating for water and dust resistance, plus a weight and dimensions of 232g and 162.3 x 79 x 8.6mm.
The Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra colors include include Titanium Violet, Titanium Gray, Titanium Black, Titanium Yellow, Titanium Blue, Titanium Green, and Titanium Orange.
As for the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5, being a foldable its dimensions can change, from 154.9 x 67.1 x 13.4mm when folded to 154.9 x 129.9 x 6.1mm when unfolded. The former is smaller but thicker than the S24 Ultra, while the latter is larger but thinner. In either case, it weighs 253g, which is heavier than the Galaxy S24 Ultra.
The Galaxy Z Fold 5 has a glass back, much like the Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra, but it has an aluminum frame, rather than the more premium titanium that Samsung is using for the Ultra.
The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 also has an IPX8 rating, meaning it matches the S24 Ultra for water resistance, but it lacks any dust resistance.
As for the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 colors, these include Icy Blue, Phantom Black, Cream, Gray, and Blue.
Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra vs Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5: display
The Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra has a 6.8-inch 1440 x 3120 display with a high 2,600-nit peak brightness and a 120Hz refresh rate. It's a great screen, with our review noting that it's "huge and sharp, among the best you’ll find."
The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 though has two screens, with its main one being a 7.6-inch 1812 x 2176 foldable display with a 120Hz refresh rate and a peak brightness of 1,750 nits. So it’s a bigger screen than the Galaxy S24 Ultra's, but with a lower maximum brightness and fewer pixels per inch, at 373 compared to 505.
As for the Galaxy Z Fold 5’s second screen, that’s a 6.2-inch 904 x 2316 cover display with a 120Hz refresh rate, and the same 1,750-nit peak brightness.
Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra vs Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5: cameras
The cameras are one of the most interesting aspects of the Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra, especially as Samsung’s Ultra handsets tend to rank among the best camera phones.
The Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra's cameras include a 200MP main camera, a 12MP ultra-wide, a 10MP telephoto offering 3x optical zoom, and a 50MP periscope with 5x optical zoom. The last of those also offers a 10x optical quality crop, along with a 100x digital zoom. The phone also has a 12MP selfie camera.
These cameras impress in practice, with our Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra review saying that it "holds Samsung’s crown as the best camera phone all around, for any occasion."
The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5’s cameras aren’t one of its main highlights, but they’re respectable, as the phone has a 50MP main snapper, a 12MP ultra-wide one, a 10MP telephoto (offering 3x optical zoom), a 10MP selfie camera on the cover screen, and a 4MP under-display selfie camera on the foldable screen.
So it has five cameras in total, just like the Galaxy S24 Ultra, but two on the Z Fold 5 are dedicated to selfies, the main camera has fewer megapixels, and it can’t zoom as far as you can with the Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra. Still, our Z Fold 5 review concluded that the "rear cameras capture lovely (if slightly over-saturated) imagery."
The Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra also has arguably better camera software and features, as Samsung has incorporated all sorts of AI-powered camera modes for the S24 Ultra, including the ability to move and remove objects and people in photos, and extend the backgrounds of images.
That said, some of these features will come to the Galaxy Z Fold 5 as a software update.
Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra vs Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5: performance
The Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra has a Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 chipset, which is a clear upgrade over the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chipset in the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5. So you can unsurprisingly expect better performance from the newer phone. However, both phones have 12GB of RAM.
In any case, the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 is a high-performance smartphone, which in our Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 review we described as offering “a smooth and effortless user experience.”
So while the Galaxy S24 Ultra is even snappier, with our review saying "the Ultra is just as fast as the iPhone 15 Pro Max, and in many ways it’s even faster", you probably won’t feel like you’re missing out on too much horsepower by opting for the Z Fold 5.
Storage isn't any different at all, with the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 coming with between 256GB and 1TB, and the Galaxy S24 Ultra doing the same.
And both of these phones run Android with Samsung’s One UI over the top, so software is similar as well – though the Galaxy S24 Ultra offers some AI tricks not currently found on the Galaxy Z Fold 5, such as live translation of voice calls, and some camera features outlined above.
Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra vs Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5: battery life
The Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra’s battery is a 5,000mAh one with 45W charging. That’s exactly the same as the S23 Ultra, so nothing remarkable.
In our Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra review we found that while continuously browsing the web on 5G until the battery runs out, the Galaxy S24 Ultra lasted 16 hours and 45 minutes. That's in its default Adaptive display mode, and puts it among the longest lasting phones around.
According to Samsung, it's capable of up to 28 hours of internet usage, up to 30 hours of video playback, or up to 95 hours of audio playback.
As for the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5, that has a 4,400mAh battery with 25W charging. So it’s smaller and slower to charge than the S24 Ultra.
In our own tests we found this phone delivered all-day life, while Samsung claims it can deliver up to 18 hours of internet usage, up to 21 hours of video playback, or up to 73 hours of audio playback, all of which is somewhat less than what the S24 Ultra is capable of.
Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra vs Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5: verdict
The Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra is more powerful than the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5, as well as having better cameras (complete with more megapixels and a longer distance optical zoom).
The Galaxy S24 Ultra also uses a more premium material for its frame, has a brighter screen, offers better battery life, and has AI features that you don’t currently get on the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5. All that and it costs less too.
So why would you buy the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5? Well, simply because it’s a foldable, and one of the best foldable phones at that. So if you want a tablet-sized screen with the versatility of being able to switch to a smartphone-sized one without changing the device, then the Fold 5 is a better choice. But for most people, the Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra is the superior all-round device.
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James is a freelance phones, tablets and wearables writer and sub-editor at TechRadar. He has a love for everything ‘smart’, from watches to lights, and can often be found arguing with AI assistants or drowning in the latest apps. James also contributes to 3G.co.uk, 4G.co.uk and 5G.co.uk and has written for T3, Digital Camera World, Clarity Media and others, with work on the web, in print and on TV.