Fast Charge: New leaks point towards big changes for 2024 foldables

OPINION: The foldable market is advancing at an increasingly rapid pace, and it looks like 2024 could be a particularly transformative year for some of the most popular foldable brands around – if leaks and rumours are to be believed, anyway. 

The Motorola Razr’s big cover screen is about to get even bigger

Let’s start with the Motorola Razr 50 lineup, which is rumoured to appear as soon as sometime in June. 

The Motorola Razr 40 Ultra was one of the absolute best clamshell foldables of last year, and my personal favourite. It fixed a lot of complaints I had about the form factor prior to its release, like having to unfold the phone to perform simple tasks not available on the narrow cover screens we were used to. 

With the Razr’s 3.6-inch cover screen that allowed access to any Android app I had installed, that was no longer an issue.

However, it seems that this year’s Razer 50 Ultra is going to take that a step further if recent leaks and rumours are to be believed. It’s said that the top-end Razr for 2024 will sport an even larger 4-inch cover display, taking up practically the entire front panel. 

This not only means that apps will be even more usable than they were on the Razr 40 Ultra, but, going by leaked renders, it also gives the Razr 50 Ultra an extremely premium look unmatched by any other foldable right now.

It should also have quite the hardware upgrade, with leaked specs including a double 50MP camera setup, up from the 12MP and 13MP combo from last year’s foldable, along with an improved IPX8 water resistance rating, Snapdragon 8s Gen 3 power and AI-powered photo and video editing tools to boot. 

The regular Razr 50 should also get a huge upgrade to match its premium sibling, ditching the narrow strip display on its cover for the same 3.6-inch OLED cover screen as the Razr 40 Ultra. Combined with a vegan leather finish and new colour options, it should be a serious upgrade over the Razr 40 that might surpass anything else at the budget end of the foldable market. 

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 6 should look more refined

Motorola isn’t the only brand looking to refresh its foldable line for 2024, with Samsung’s big-screen Z Fold 6 also said to get some much-needed TLC. However, if you were hoping for a substantial redesign that’d bring its traditionally tall-and-narrow 6.2-inch cover screen down to something a little more manageable, you’ll be disappointed.

Instead, the cover screen is said to match its predecessor in terms of dimensions, though the Z Fold 6 will have much slimmer bezels and squared-off corners. That gives it a look not too dissimilar to the top-end Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra, with some rumours claiming that it’ll also come equipped with the same titanium frame. 

You can see it side-by-side with the older Galaxy Z Fold 5 in the below X leak:

It’s not a huge redesign, granted, but it’s one that makes the Z Fold 6 look a little more refined while also improving the (sometimes awkward) typing experience.

The rear of the phone is also said to get a refresh with a redesigned camera housing, seen below, though it could be a case of misdirection from Samsung as rumours suggest that the actual camera hardware will match that of the Z Fold 5.

Instead, it’s the Z Flip 6 that’s said to get some much-needed camera improvements this year, along with a faster Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 processor and a larger battery, though don’t expect it to look any different to last year’s Z Flip 5. 

Again, this is something that we won’t have to wait too long to see in the flesh, with rumours pointing towards a reveal on 10 July 2024 in Paris, much earlier than previous entries in the Z Flip and Z Fold series. 

The Google Pixel Fold 2 could fix everything

I’ve got to admit, I didn’t love the Google Pixel Fold when I reviewed it last year – and that was before I’d seen truly next-gen foldables like the OnePlus Open and Honor Magic V2 that make the Pixel Fold look practically ancient. 

It was thick, heavy, had a relatively small cover screen, oddly thick bezels on the internal display and issues with app support that most other foldable manufacturers had already overcome. Considering the £1,749 price tag, I just couldn’t recommend it to consumers. 

However, it looks like that could change with the Pixel Fold 2 – or Pixel 9 Fold, depending on who you ask – with leaks suggesting there could be quite a big redesign on the cards.

The initial leak was a doozy; a photo of the phone itself. It’s likely an early prototype than a finalised model given it leaked in early February, but it gives us a good look at the unfolded Pixel Fold 2. 

Pixel Fold 2 leak
Image Credit: Android Authority

Per the image, it looks like it has a taller, narrower cover screen, a redesigned camera housing and more. The source of the image, who spoke to Android Authority, also claimed that the metal frame felt more premium than the original Fold, and that the device felt much slimmer too.

That’s something we got confirmation on a little later, with more detailed Google Pixel Fold 2 renders from the ever-accurate OnLeaks and SmartPrix showcasing a device with a redesigned cover screen, slimmer bezels and what looks like an under-screen camera on the internal foldable display. 

Google Pixel Fold 2 renderGoogle Pixel Fold 2 render
Image Credit: OnLeaks x SmartPrix

The leaker also suggests that the cover screen measures in at a larger 6.4 inches, up from 5.8 inches, and a 7.9-inch foldable screen, up from 7.6 inches. It’s also said that the Pixel Fold 2 measures in at 5.27mm when unfolded, compared to 5.8mm from the Fold, and a folded width of 10.54mm, down from 12.1mm. 

The camera housing looks totally different from the rest of the Pixel lineup, and considering the regular Pixel 8 camera bar usually gets caught in my pocket as I take it out, I welcome the change with open arms. 

That’s not all, folks

Of course, there are plenty of other foldable manufacturers including Honor, OnePlus, Oppo, Vivo, Xiaomi and Huawei, all of which are likely working on next-gen foldable hardware right now, so who knows what other innovations we’ll see from the foldable market as the rest of 2024 plays out. The future of foldables certainly looks bright, either way.

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