It’s been a long road, but the day is finally (almost) here. On October 30, you’ll be able to buy a Samsung Galaxy Fold in Australia for the princely sum of $2,999.
After the events surrounding its launch earlier in the year, you could be forgiven for going a bit cold on the Fold. Its reputation as one of the most talked-about phones of 2019 is well-earned, but it’s been out of the spotlight locally here for the last couple of months as Samsung chose to launch the phone quietly and slowly in select markets around the world (and wanted to focus on Note 10 here). The company says that’s gone well for them, with initial stock allocations selling out in each of its launch markets. Now, it’s Australia’s turn.
In what looks like a first for a device launching in Australia, Samsung’s also negotiated ESIM setup on all of our major telcos – you should be able to get up and running without actually having to insert a SIM into the Fold. This also means if you have the need, you could insert a physical SIM and it becomes a dual-SIM device.
It’s also worth noting that Samsung isn’t doing things by halves when it comes to the specs of the Fold. That premium (oh so premium) price gets you a fast processor, 12GB of RAM and a whopping 512GB of storage.
Hands-on with the Galaxy Fold
Today marks the first time I’ve gone hands-on with the Fold, and it was a pretty enjoyable experience.
The device is extremely solid unfolded, and presents a big, inviting canvas for you to interact with in that state. It’s great for playing games and browsing the web.
Samsung’s put a lot of effort into ensuring that apps can smoothly transition from the comparatively tiny screen on the front of the phone onto the expansive canvas on the inside.
If you’re really into multitasking (and Samsung says research shows a lot of Australians are), you can run up to three apps side-by-side when unfolded, and a fourth is also possible as an overlay if you’re really into it.
There’s a lot of attention to detail paid to how users will interact with the device when unfolded – the camera app even allows you to place an extra shutter button somewhere around the screen in a convenient location.
Speaking of cameras, don’t forget there’s a triple-camera array on the rear of the Fold as well as a forward-facing camera when closed and a forward facing dual camera when open.
Our brief time with the Galaxy Fold this morning has left us pretty excited about the device. It’s way sturdier and solid in person than we’d have ever believed from all the tales going around online, and it looks like Samsung’s nailed the software experience.
At the tiniest shade under $3,000, it’s probably the most expensive phone we’ve ever laid hands on (no, wait, that could be a Vertu), but Samsung’s making a legitimate case for the technology its packing within. The Galaxy Fold is here, and it does exactly what the company’s been saying it would do. We can’t wait to put it on the Ausdroid test bench (carefully).
There’s no two ways about it – the Galaxy Fold is absolutely not a phone for everyone. This kind of technology doesn’t come cheap, and the company is likely not expecting to ship that many units into the country and sell them. Uptake in other launch markets is an encouraging sign though, and we think there’s a decent appetite for something new out there – maybe this, or one of the other foldable devices said to be launching in the coming months – will be it.
The Australian launch of the Galaxy Fold will see the phone go on sale on October 30 at Samsung stores and at select retailers. If you’ve previously pre-registered for the phone, Samsung will be getting in touch with you to invite you to a store to get one of the first units in the country.