I have been using the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 for 10 days. It’s not a huge upgrade over last year’s Galaxy Z Fold 3. But it’s hands down the finest and finest foldable smartphone I’ve ever gotten my hands on. It feels premium, has a stronger hinge, and the screens look fantastic. Yes, there are issues with battery and software optimization. My colleague Abhik will have more to say on this, so read his full review on India Today Tech. I’m just here to share some tips that will help you get the most out of your Galaxy Z Fold 4.
The charm is obviously the dual-screen form factor, but Samsung’s new foldable smartphone is more versatile than that. I discover amazing things every day and if you are thinking of buying this ultra-premium device, you should know some of these experiences too.
The new taskbar
The big new feature of the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 is an all-new taskbar, inspired by Windows. It sits at the bottom of the inner screen and lets you instantly switch between multiple apps just by tapping the icon. It’s not exactly the desktop experience, but certainly increases productivity if used well.
The new taskbar can be activated from the settings menu. You will find the option in the display section. You can also enable touch and hold, which lets you hide the taskbar by tapping anywhere on it. It’s for those who don’t want to be distracted by the tab.
For now, this is a Galaxy Fold 4 feature but, honestly, Samsung should extend it to other foldable smartphones via a software update.
Once activated, the taskbar really helps you make the most of the large indoor screen. You can open any app above the currently running app directly from the taskbar. You can swipe apps to open three apps at the same time. On top of that, you can drag and open two floating windows on the screen, all without having to close the main application. I also realized that the app bar is mirrored in the taskbar, so choose carefully which apps you want to keep there.
One of the best parts of owning a Z Fold 4 is the luxury of trying out features from Samsung Labs. These are beta features, still in testing, that Samsung has yet to fully include in its OneUI software for everyone to use. Most of them are aimed at improving multitasking on the Z Fold 4. These features can be explored under the Advanced Features option in the Settings menu.
Labs offers two alternative options to enable split-screen multitasking or pop-up floating window mode. It also gives you the option to open a split screen or a popup floating window using a swipe. There is another option to enable multi-window. It shows a line at the top, right in the center of the foldable screen, from which you can place any app on a split screen.
Finally, there is an option to force apps into Flex mode. Some applications have been optimized for this. For example, YouTube plays the video on the top half of the screen and gives you some controls at the bottom. But, other apps may struggle.
Samsung upgraded the camera system on the Galaxy Z Fold 4 and used the same sensors as the flagship Galaxy S22 and S22+. But, the form factor lets you do so much more with this camera system. First of all, a massive viewfinder is a blessing. I’ve always considered this a huge plus for the iPhone 13 Pro Max, but the Galaxy Z Fold 4 makes the processing more, shall we say, cool.
Then there are some tricks you can use. For example, there is an option to preview images instantly on half the screen. So you can decide if the image was good or not, without having to open it separately in the Gallery. You can also use the cover screen as a viewfinder and click images from the rear camera.
Another nifty feature of the camera, for video recording, is auto framing. When activated, it follows you and moves the sensor to make sure you are always in the center of the screen. Now, we’ve seen this before on the iPad and Samsung’s own S-series, but, again, it’s the foldable form factor that makes auto-framing even more fun. I used it in flex mode and, let me tell you, it works really well. This can be especially useful for vloggers and content creators.
Use with mouse or keyboard
The Galaxy Z Fold 4 can also be paired with a mouse or keyboard. Again, this adds another layer of productivity to this already impressive smartphone.
Continue apps on cover screen
It’s a feature I’ve used on previous foldable phones as well, but it’s useful and finds a place on the list. We all know the Galaxy Z Fold 4’s large interior screen is great for consuming content and all. But let me tell you, holding the phone like that can be tricky.
The best way to counter this is to enable the option to continue apps on the cover screen. So if you feel tired, just fold the phone and you will find the same app running on the cover screen. It’s seamless.
Mirror cover screen
What if you want to keep things simple and don’t want too much work? There is also a way around this. You can simply enable the “mirror cover screen” option and the outdoor display will be mirrored indoors.
Another feature that isn’t new to the smartphone world but should be tried in this form factor. You can enable edge lighting from the “Brief pop up” option in the Settings menu. You can select different edge lighting styles and give it a favorite color to make sure you don’t have to pick up the phone every time there’s a notification.
— ENDS —