[Design Story] The Story Behind the Galaxy Z Flip’s Fashion-Forward Design
Last year, Samsung redefined smartphone design as we know it with the introduction of its first foldable device, the Galaxy Fold. While that category-defining smartphone was created with a focus on the action of unfolding (i.e., “What if you could unfold your phone to experience apps and content on a larger screen?”), the design of the company’s second foldable device, the Galaxy Z Flip, focuses on the opposite action: folding your smartphone to make it more compact.
As Tae-joong Kim, Vice President of Samsung Electronics’ Mobile Communications Business, explained, by combining a pocket-friendly form with striking style, “The Galaxy Z lineup introduces a new identity to the foldable mobile category. One that adds a fashionable touch to users’ lives.”
Follow along as we examine how Samsung refined each aspect of the Galaxy Z Flip’s design to offer users a whole new mobile experience.
The Galaxy Z Flip is available in a choice of three stylish colors: the bold and creative Mirror Purple, the luxurious Mirror Black, which features a slight bluish tint, and the elegant and refined Mirror Gold. During the manufacturing process, Samsung combined a smooth glass finish with precise processing, resulting in layers of colors that reflect a range of hues depending on the angle at which the device is folded.
It’s All in the Details
Measuring just 73.6mm across, the Galaxy Z Flip is small enough to fit in the palm of one’s hand, and slips easily into a pocket or bag. To make the device as compact and portable as possible, Samsung tested out numerous form factors before ultimately landing on the design you see before you. No detail was overlooked. The design was contemplated down to the micrometer to ensure that it would offer users a comfortable grip.
The finished design also reflects careful consideration of usability, as evidenced by convenient features like the cover display. When the Galaxy Z Flip is closed, the cover display presents users with information such as the date, time, their device’s battery status and more, and when they’re taking a selfie, it allows them to see how they look. When the device is opened, Samsung’s intuitive One UI makes it easy to manage the Galaxy Z Flip’s spacious, 6.7-inch display with one hand.
“Along with size and grip, the user experience was a key focus of design,” Kim explained. “We designed the Galaxy Z Flip to make it easy to: 1) access basic information when the device is folded, and 2) multitask on its large display.”
Unfolding a New User Experience
Through extensive research into how consumers are using their smartphones today, Samsung identified that the ability to fold and utilize a smartphone at various angles would add a new layer of convenience to the user experience. The Galaxy Z Flip was specifically designed to be folded and used at multiple angles, which makes everything from taking pictures and video calling, to viewing media more comfortable and convenient.
Realizing that functionality would require a hinge that was both durable and exquisite, like a cogwheel. Through exhaustive research on hinge designs, as well as close cooperation among hardware departments, Samsung eventually came up with a blueprint for a hinge that would be capable of standing a foldable device up at any angle. The Galaxy Z Flip’s intricate Hideaway Hinge is the product of these efforts. It allows users to utilize their device at various angles, and enables the smartphone to stand completely on its own. It’s also sturdy enough to ensure that the device will not open or close by itself.
Samsung anticipates that the Galaxy Z Flip’s ability to stand on its own will change the smartphone experience. “Both the market and consumer lifestyles are constantly diversifying,” said Kim. “To address consumers’ needs, we will continue exploring ways to enrich the Galaxy Z lineup and the foldable mobile category with meaningful and enjoyable experiences.”
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