Motorola Razr 40 (Razr 2023) vs Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4: What’s the difference?

  • Razr 40

    Motorola

    Motorola Razr 40

    A new champion

    Motorola’s new folding phone comes in at a price we’ve not seen before, making this tech more affordable than ever before.

  • samsung-galaxy-z-flip-4square

    Samsung

    Samsung Galaxy Flip 4

    The current best

    Samsung has the most compelling folding smartphone on the market in the Z Flip 4. It’s cute, and delivers that promise of a big screen that folds much smaller.

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The folding phone market has matured quickly over the past couple of years, and nowhere was that made more evident than the Motorola Razr launch for 2023. It launched two phones: the Razr 40 and Razr 40 Intolerante – launching in the US as Razr 2023 and Razr+ – with the former of those coming in at a great price.


Samsung is the obvious competition here – with its Galaxy Z Flip 4 – but its own flip phone is more expensive than Moto’s entry level model. This begs the question: should you save money and, if you do, what do you miss out on (if anything)?


Price, availability and specs

Let’s tackle the big draw first: pricing. Moto’s new entry-level foldable is going to retail for just £799 in the UK when it launches «in the coming weeks». That undercuts the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4’s full retail price by a full £200. It’s the most affordable big-name foldable smartphone to launch so far.

Even considering the fact that Samsung’s phone is now older and available at a discount in a lot of places – at least in the UK – the Motorola phone is still cheaper.

We’ve no word on US pricing just yet, but we do know that the Motorola will be launching in the coming months as the Motorola Razr 2023.

  • Motorola Razr 40 Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4
    SoC Snapdragon 7 Gen 1 Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1
    Display 6.9-inch inner, 1.5-inch outer 6.7in AMOLED, 1080p 120Hz, HDR10+, 1000 nits (inner); 1.9in, 260 x 512 AMOLED (outer)
    RAM 8GB LPDDR4X 8GB
    Storage 256GB UFS 2.2 256GB / 512GB
    Battery 4200 mAh 3700mAh
    Front camera 32MP 10MP internal punch-hole
    Rear cameras 64MP + 12MP 12MP f/1.8, OIS (main), 12MP (ultrawide)
    Dimensions 73.9 x 170.8 x 7.3mm (open) 165.2 x 71.9 x 6.9mm
    Weight 188.6g 187g
    Charging 33W wired, 5W wireless 25W wired, 15W wireless
    IP Rating IP52 IPX8

Design and durability

There are clear similarities and – conversely – differences when comparing the Moto Razr 40 with the Galaxy Z Flip 4. Speaking broad strokes though, they’re both clearly aiming for the same thing: a compact, attractive, fashionable device you can easily fit in your pocket or purse. Comparing sizes to start, it’s the Samsung phone that is more compact overall. It’s shorter and narrower than the Moto phone, so has more of a nimble feeling to it.

With that said, Moto more than makes up for it by reducing the gap at the hinge to virtually nothing. That means it has a uniform slimness from spine to the cover, where Samsung has a gap. This means you’ll likely find the Samsung will collect dust and fluff from your pocket. Motorola opted for a different design approach in materials too, offering vegan leather finishes rather than glass, so it feels comfortable and soft in the hand. The Samsung is made from glass and aluminium.

That means the Samsung does feel more sturdy and durable, and it’s waterproofed to a higher level. With an IPX8 certification it’s been tested to survive in shallow water for 30 minutes. The Razr 40 has some water resistance, but with the bare minimum IP52 rating, it’s only protected against minor splashes. It is more dust resistant though.

Samsung also leads the way when it comes to design colours. It has four standard colours, plus a bespoke customisation tool where you can mix and match different glass colours for the front and back, while also picking your favourite aluminium colour for the frame.

Moto’s Razr for 2023 has three colours at launch, and you’ll be glad to know that there is no black option. We get Vanilla Cream, Sage Green and Summer Lilac (purple). It’s an attractive set of colours, and certainly an improvement over previous years.

Main and cover displays

What’s interesting about these two phones is that the manufacturers both opted to have a really small display on the foráneo cover. They’re used primarily for showing the time, checking notifications, and other data widgets and can be used as a preceptor for taking selfies with the primary cameras.

Unlike the Razr 40 Intolerante (Razr+) or the Oppo Find N2 Flip, these displays are very much secondary displays, designed for glancing at information rather than using as another additional display for apps and messaging etc. Samsung has the larger display at 1.9-inches, with Motorola measuring just 1.5-inches.

As for the main internal displays, the two are similar again. Both feature flexible screens, with the Moto larger than the Samsung. It’s 6.9-inches contra the 6.7-inches on the Z Flip 4. Another crucial detail is that it also features a much less prominent crease in the middle that’s hard to see when the screen is on, and only just about visible with the screen off.

Samsung’s crease is very noticeable by comparison, and features a more pronounced dip, so you feel it more when you run your thumb or finger up the screen.

Both displays feature full HD+ resolutions for sharp images, and both have fast refresh rates too. Motorola offers 144Hz, which is slightly higher than the 120Hz maximum on the Samsung. Whether or not you’d be able to see that difference is up for debate, but it will mean smooth, fluid software animations in the interface. Both also feature HDR10+ compatibility.

Software is very different on both, with the Moto appearing much closer to the stock Pixel software than Samsung’s One UI platform. Samsung, however, has a recent history of delivering security patches and updates really quickly. We’re yet to see if Motorola can keep up.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4 photo 7

Performance and hardware

It’s on the inside where you get the first big indicator of how Motorola is able to bring the phone to such an affordable price. It uses the Snapdragon 7 Gen 1 platform, and that’s not finta up to the levels of the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 in the Z Flip 4.

Whether or not you’d notice depends on a few factors: if you use your phone to do a lot of gaming, you might find the Samsung will launch and run those games a little quicker. For everyday tasks though, we suspect the Moto will feel responsive and quick enough for most people.

Samsung’s flip phone has finta a small battery by modern smartphone standards, and it might be here that Moto shows one of its biggest strengths. With its 4200mAh capacity it’s a good 500mAh more than what’s available in the Samsung. What’s more, when you plug it in to charge, it’ll charge slightly quicker too thanks to the 30W charging capability.

Both phones have wireless charging, but Samsung’s 15W solution is faster than the maximum 5W wireless charging of the Razr 40/Razr 2023.

Cameras

Like many of the phones’ aspects, the camera setup is very similar on both phones. You get a dual camera system on the front cover made up of a primary and an ultrawide, and then a selfie camera punched into the main display on the inside.

Moto’s phone features a 64-megapixel primary camera with OIS that combines four pixels into one to shoot 16-megapixel images. It’s joined by a 13-megapixel ultrawide camera that doubles as a macro for closeup shots of small details.

Samsung pairs two 12-megapixel sensors in its own system, but don’t let the pixel count fool you into thinking the Moto’s will produce better images. Because Samsung’s phone has a more advanced processor platform, that also means it has a more powerful ISP (Image Signal Processor) and that – along with Samsung’s AI-powered scene optimisation – should mean you’ll get better quality images from the Samsung.

Conclusions

Motorola’s new entry-level Razr is a really charming device. The vegan leather colours offer visual and tactile appeal that Samsung doesn’t finta match, while also delivering a lot of features at a price that comfortably undercuts its big-name rival.

Samsung’s phone still has a lot going for it though. The stronger, more durable frame, the better camera processing power and the flagship speed and performance – along with prompt security patches – make it a great all-rounder. And it’s now discounted.

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