Samsung updates older foldable devices with new Z Flip 5 and Z Fold 5 features.

Samsung updates older foldable devices with new Z Flip 5 and Z Fold 5 features.

Samsung’s Z Flip and Z Fold Phones Getting New Features

Samsung is bringing new features to its older Z Flip and Z Fold phones through an operating system update. The company announced that features from its latest update, One UI 5.1.1, which was introduced with the new Z Flip 5 and Fold 5, will soon be available for older models, starting with the Z Flip 4 and Z Fold 4 this month.

This move by Samsung aligns with its goal to create a consistent experience across its Z Flip and Z Fold phones as it strives to make foldable devices more mainstream. The announcement was made at Samsung’s Unpacked event, where the company unveiled the Galaxy Z Flip 5, Z Fold 5, Galaxy Watch 6 series, and Galaxy Tab S9 family.

The updates mainly focus on enhancing the software experience in Flex Mode for the Z Flip and Z Fold. Flex Mode allows apps to automatically shift to the top part of the screen when the device is folded halfway, while displaying device controls at the bottom.

With this update, Samsung aims to improve the accessibility and customization of buttons and controls on the bottom half of the screen. Users will have the option to show or hide Flex Mode controls, and the media play button will be available in this panel when streaming videos.

Samsung plans to bring these updates to other models such as the Z Fold 3, Z Flip 3, Z Fold 2, and Z Flip, but a specific timeline was not provided. This commitment to supporting older devices with new software aligns with Samsung’s practice of providing its phones with four generations of Android updates, whereas most rivals offer only three.

In addition to the Z Flip and Z Fold updates, Samsung is also expanding new software features from the Galaxy Tab S9 series and Galaxy Watch 6 family to older tablets and smartwatches. For the tablets, this includes two-handed drag-and-drop functionality, easier switching between pop-up and multi-window modes, and an upgraded task bar. These features will be available on devices including the Galaxy Tab S8 family, Tab S7 family, Tab S6 Lite, Tab A8, Tab A7 Lite, Tab Active 3, and Tab Active 4 Pro. Some of these tablet features will also work on the Galaxy Z Fold 4.

For Galaxy Watch users, the update brings an improved user interface with more detailed sleep data, personalized heart rate zones, a new mode for recording runs on tracks, support for running and walking in the Galaxy Watch 5 Pro’s Route Workout mode, and notifications of irregular heart rhythms for the Galaxy Watch 5 and Watch 4 series.

These updates highlight the trend of tech companies delivering meaningful new features through software updates, as hardware upgrades have become less dramatic year after year. Apple has also followed a similar approach, providing useful updates to older devices like the Apple Watch. By bringing fresh updates to older devices, Samsung is placing more emphasis on software, revitalizing aging products, and aiming to establish a device ecosystem that rivals Apple’s.

This focus on software is particularly important for Samsung’s Z Flip and Z Fold phones, given their high price points, starting at $1,000 and $1,800 respectively. Samsung seeks to provide added value to customers and ensure longevity for its flagship devices. With these updates, Samsung continues to demonstrate its commitment to its users and the ever-evolving world of mobile technology.