Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 leaker just tipped a big design change

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 render
(Image credit: Waqar Khan)

While the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 reportedly won’t be getting a dedicated space to dock the S-Pen, it will apparently make a big adjustment to the aspect ratio of the device that is likely to split opinion.

That’s according to the reliable leaker Ice Universe, who tweeted an illustration of what he expects the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4’s dimensions to look like compared to its predecessor. “The internal screen ratio of Fold3 is 5:4, and Fold4 is closer to the square,” he tweeted (opens in new tab) elsewhere. 

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While Ice Universe emphasizes that this is based on “limited information” you can immediately see the difference, with the display being both shorter and wider.

There are positives and negatives to this move. In the positive column, it would make the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 feel more like a regular phone when folded. Currently, the Z Fold 3 offers a slightly peculiar 24.5:9 aspect ratio when closed — it’s tall and thin, in other words. This move would bring it closer to 18:9, which certainly feels more familiar. 

When opened, it would also present a larger canvas as Ice Universe himself notes. In a follow-up tweet (opens in new tab), he added that this means it jumps from 7.55-inches to 7.56-inches across the diameter which gives more space to play with.

But the square shape is difficult for a couple of reasons. Firstly, it’s not a great portable cinema, given content isn’t really produced for square screens. With large black bars, you’d probably be better off using the external screen for streaming instead.

Secondly, one of the advantages of a regular tablet’s aspect ratio is it’s more flexible. Need something taller? Just rotate it. But if you rotate a square (or nearly square) display, nothing changes.

Galaxy Z Fold 4 battery life

Ultimately, we’re sure Samsung knows what it’s doing here, and we’re promised a thinner and lighter Galaxy Z Fold 4, too, which is clearly a positive. But that also means we’re unlikely to get any great improvements to battery life. 

Indeed, Galaxy Club (opens in new tab) has uncovered a safety listing (opens in new tab) which shows the new handset will have a very similar battery capacity to its predecessor. Once again, the battery is split into two cells across both halves of the handset with one rated 2,002mAh and the other 2,268mAh for a total of 4,270mAh. That’s actually a bit lower than the Z Fold 3’s 4,400mAh cell, but we imagine it will be advertised as the same rated capacity when it’s revealed.

We’re still some way off from the Galaxy Z Fold 4’s reveal, but we’re expecting Samsung to reduce the price a little bit more in order to drive adoption of foldables and cement its place as the market leader — though how that fits with the rumored boost to the main camera is unclear. We’ll likely know more in the late summer or early fall.

Freelance contributor Alan has been writing about tech for over a decade, covering phones, drones and everything in between. Previously Deputy Editor of tech site Alphr, his words are found all over the web and in the occasional magazine too. When not weighing up the pros and cons of the latest smartwatch, you'll probably find him tackling his ever-growing games backlog. Or, more likely, playing Spelunky for the millionth time.