Motorola’s affordable Razr may revolutionize folding phones.

Motorola's affordable Razr may revolutionize folding phones.

The Motorola Razr (2023) and Razr Plus: A Refreshing Take on Foldable Phones

Image Photo by Andy Boxall / ENBLE

In the midst of all the hype surrounding Samsung’s latest foldable phones, the Galaxy Z Flip 5 and the Galaxy Z Fold 5, we mustn’t forget that Motorola has also recently released its own line of foldable phones. The Motorola Razr (2023) and the Razr Plus (known as the Razr 40 and Razr 40 Ultra in the U.K.) are two flip foldables that deserve our attention. However, there is something quite special about these devices. While the Razr Plus is a flagship phone with similarities to the Galaxy Z Flip 5, the Razr (2023) is rumored to be a true midrange phone, a rarity in the world of foldable smartphones.

The Razr (2019) was ahead of its time

Image Photo by Riley Young / ENBLE

Let’s take a trip back in time to the first generation of flip smartphones. In February 2020, the original Samsung Galaxy Z Flip and the Motorola Razr (2019) were released. These two phones shared similarities in terms of the flip fold design and their high price points, which reflected the cutting-edge technology they offered. However, one key difference between them was the specifications. The Galaxy Z Flip, priced at $1,380, boasted powerful specs, including the Snapdragon 855+ chip and top-of-the-line cameras. In contrast, the Motorola Razr (2019), priced at over $1,500, had midrange specs at best. Its Snapdragon 710 processor, 6GB of RAM, and 128GB of storage were underwhelming compared to its more affordable and powerful counterpart.

It’s fair to say that Motorola missed an opportunity with the Razr (2019). It wasn’t a bad phone per se, but its price tag didn’t align with its specifications. The technology was still new, and lowering the price to match the midrange specs wasn’t feasible at the time. Nevertheless, Motorola continued its foldable phone journey in the years that followed.

The Razr (2023) is a game-changer we need

Image Photo by Andy Boxall / ENBLE

Foldable phones have been around for several years now, with Samsung leading the charge with its Galaxy Z series, which includes an impressive ten foldable devices. However, there is one notable absence in Samsung’s lineup: a midrange foldable phone. Some may argue that midrange phones are unnecessary when it comes to foldables, as they are perceived as premium tech. But that couldn’t be further from the truth. While traditional phones can be mundane, foldables represent a new frontier in smart device development, bringing excitement back to the world of smartphones.

Truth be told, foldable phones have yet to break into the mainstream. While the Galaxy Z Flip has gained some traction, foldables from other manufacturers remain few and far between. Why is that? It’s likely because foldable phones are still seen as experimental and expensive, creating a less desirable combination. Just like virtual reality didn’t take off until it became affordable and accessible, foldable phones need a midrange option to truly thrive. The strong brand recognition of the original Motorola Razr V3 combined with the Razr (2023)’s midrange approach could be the winning formula.

The pricing details of the Razr (2023) are limited, but rumors suggest it won’t exceed the $1,000 mark, as the Razr Plus already occupies that premium price range. However, to attract more consumers, a price point closer to $600 would make the Razr (2023) a formidable competitor against phones like the Google Pixel 7.

A Late, But Welcome Arrival

Image Photo by Andy Boxall / ENBLE

I’ll say it outright: the Motorola Razr (2019) should have been a midrange phone. It should have been released at a more reasonable price to truly showcase its potential. However, while the best time to release a midrange foldable may have been a few years ago, the second-best time is right now. If the Razr (2023) is priced competitively, it could be the missing piece that propels foldable smartphones into the mainstream market.

Nevertheless, the road ahead won’t be easy, even with the right pricing strategy. Motorola has a chance to gain a head start, but other manufacturers are likely already eyeing the midrange foldables space. Although there haven’t been any rumors of a cheaper foldable from Samsung, that doesn’t mean one isn’t in the works. Additionally, Motorola will also need to contend with older variants of Samsung’s folding smartphones, as refurbished models of the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4 can already be found for just over $600 on Amazon.

Ultimately, competition from older flagships has always been a challenge for midrange phones. Yet, a midrange-priced Razr could be the game-changer that solidifies the position of foldable smartphones in the market. Exciting times lie ahead, and we can’t wait to see what the future holds.