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Motorola Razr 5G razes the foldable clamshell smartphone competition

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No this is not a clickbait article! I had to make this clear even before I start as there are only two foldable clamshell smartphones in the market and the majority is favouring the one with huge marketing budgets or deep pockets as we know. Yes, that’s the sad reality, but the good thing is not everybody believes that just having a more powerful processor makes for a better device.

Alright, by now most of you might have guessed that I’m talking about the Motorola Razr 5G and the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5G smartphones. Yes, yes, I know that the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5G hasn’t even launched in India, but it will be unfair not to compare the 5G version of the Z Flip with the 5G version of the Razr. While I have the Razr 5G but not the Z Flip 5G, but I can still legitimately compare both the devices as the only difference between the Z Flip and the Z Flip 5G is the processor that is 5G capable. Rest everything has been left as it is and not even a single change has been made to the device. On the other hand, Motorola worked on everything possible to enhance the user experience of the Motorola Razr smartphone.

Let’s first look at the specs of both these devices:

Motorola Razr 5G Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5G
THICKNESS 169.2 x 72.6 x 7.9 mm (unfolded)
91.7 x 72.6 x 16 mm (folded)
192 grams
167.3 x 73.6 x 7.2 mm (unfolded)
87.4 x 73.6 x 17.3 mm (folded)
183 grams
DISPLAY Main display: 6.2 inches, 876 x 2142p (HD+), 373 ppi, Foldable P-OLED
External display: 2.7 inches, 600 x 800 pixels, G-OLED
6.7 inches, 1080 x 2636p (Full HD+), Foldable Dynamic AMOLED
External display: 1.1 inches, Super AMOLED, 112 x 300 pixels
PROCESSOR Qualcomm Snapdragon 765G, octa-core 2.4 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 865+, octa-core 3.09 GHz
MEMORY 8 GB RAM, 256 GB 8 GB RAM, 256 GB
SOFTWARE Android 10, Moto Actions Android 10, One UI
CONNECTIVITY Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 5.1, GPS Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac/ax, Bluetooth 5, GPS
CAMERA 48 MP f/1.7
20 MP f/2.2 front camera
Dual 12 + 12 MP, f/1.8 and f/2.2
10 MP f/2.4 selfie camera
BATTERY 2800 mAh
Fast charging 18W
3300 mAh, Fast Charging 15W, and fast wireless charging 9W

Now that you have gone through the specs lets visit each feature of both these devices –

 

Design

Motorola were the leaders of clamshell flip phones back in the day and that legacy passes on with the Motorola Razr 5G. The reincarnation of Razr V3/V3i with the Razr smartphone wowed us all last year. And Motorola continues to better it in 2020 with the Razr 5G.

The Motorola Razr 5G is a perfect amalgamation of design and engineering. It’s built very well and it is protected by 3D formed Gorilla Glass 5 on either side, a frame made of aluminium 7000 series, and a stainless steel hinge. It is even a water-repellent phone, so it offers some protection against water despite being a foldable phone. The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5G is also a good attempt at the foldable clamshell design but it falls short of the Motorola Razr 5G when it comes to aesthetics.

That said on a foldable smartphone, it is the hinge that moves the most and Motorola claims that the Moto Razr 5G can withstand 2,00,000 flips.

Also, the fact that Razr 5G has a patented Zero gap hinge design that protects the screen from dust and particles, instils a lot of confidence as a user vs a visible gap seen on the Z Flip and Z Flip 5G.

Lastly, what the point of buying a clamshell foldable smartphone if you can’t flip it open or close with one hand? The hinge on the Moto Razr 5G has just enough tension to enable you to open or close the device with a single hand like it’s meant to be. On the other hand, the Z Flip and Z Flip 5G come with strong resistance and hence do not support single hand flipping and ultimately fails the whole purpose of a clamshell design.

Display

This is where the Samsung Galaxy Flip Z 5G fails miserably. The fact the Moto Razr 5G comes with an interactive 2.7” Quick View gOLED Display is enough reason to buy the Razr 5G over the Z Flip 5G.

The Razr 5G allows you to do almost everything without ever having to open the phone, including Viewing notifications, making calls, taking selfies, replying to messages, playing songs, getting directions, or asking the Google Assistant to the needful. This is great for two reasons – You would hardly feel the need to open the flip for most tasks thus increasing the battery life on a day to day usage and the overall longevity in the longer run.

 

The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5G houses a tiny 1.06” cover display which does not offer anything but a ticker style notification panel. Samsung should have skipped it completely as it is good for nothing.

The inner display on the Moto Razr is optimised for single-handed clamshell usage thanks to is 21:9 cinematic ratio 6.2” pOLED display. Whereas the Z Flip and Z Flip 5G do not come with a 21:9 ratio and hence not optimized for single-hand usage which is a must-have feature for a phone of this form factor.

Cameras

The Moto Razr 5G comes with an industry-leading 48MP dual-use camera that can be used both as a primary camera and a selfie camera. Making it the most advance selfie camera one can get on a smartphone leave alone foldable smartphones. And it’s not just about the megapixels, it’s the features that it comes with –

  • 48MP Dual-use Camera
  • f/1.7 large aperture
  • Optical Image Stabilization
  • Laser Autofocus Technology
  • Time of Flight Sensor
  • Quad pixel technology
  • Dual LED flash
  • Night Mode
  • Innovative AI Modes including Spot colour with video

While the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5G comes with a dual-camera setup of 12MP each it can’t be used as a selfie camera due to the lack of usable front display.

The inner camera on the Moto Razr 5G is a 20MP with an f/2.2 aperture whilst the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip/Flip 5G gets a meagre 10MP camera with an f/2.4 aperture.

Performance

For everything, there are two ways to look at performance – performance in real life and performance on paper. Truth be told, the Galaxy Flip Z 5G does have a better SoC (Snapdragon 865) but its an overkill on a foldable clamshell design. There is no denying that the Snapdragon 865 is the most powerful SoC that Qualcomm offers but it also means that it’s power-hungry and would consume more battery, it also needs more space to fit it. On the other hand, Motorola cleverly settles for the Snapdragon 765G SoC that offers both performance and efficiency along with 5G connectivity. Now there are multiple reasons why Motorola settled for the 7xx SoC over the 8xx series of SoC from Qualcomm:

  • It’s a foldable clamshell smartphone so space is of utmost importance. By using SD 765 in the Razr 5G, Motorola could incorporate more powerful features such as bigger cameras, better 5G antennae etc.
  • SD 765G offers the best of both worlds – Performance and Efficiency. In fact, more and more smartphone makers are realising that 765G is the perfect choice for flagship smartphones. Even the makers of Android OS, Google have launched their flagship smartphone for 2020 – Pixel 5 with the 765G SoC putting an end to all the doubts.
  • It also helps to keep the costs low and include more value-adding features such as dual OLED displays, Water Resistant design, better materials such as Aluminium series 7000.

But then it doesn’t matter what hardware you have if it is not matched seamlessly with the software. Though both devices come with Android 10 pre-installed, here again, the Razr 5G has an upper hand thanks to its clean stock bloatware-free android experience with the much love Moto Actions. And for UI customizations Motorola has added My UX app that helps you personalise your Razr 5G according to your needs. Here also Samsung messes up things with its One UI which is heavy, slows down with usage and comes with a plethora of Samsung and 3rd party apps installed as bloatware.

Thanks to the Clean stock Android UI, power-efficient SoC, Quick view display, and battery optimizations even the 2800 mAh battery on the Razr 5G lasts more than a day on a single charge. The problem continues here too for Samsung as even with a considerably large 3300 mAh battery the Z Flip 5G falls short of expectations the absence of a usable secondary screen which implies higher usage of the main screen for even basic activities and a more power-hungry chipset causes a considerable drain on the battery.

One more thing! What will you do with a smartphone if you can’t take calls on it? Doesn’t make any sense, right? While Motorola has got you covered with 4 antennas that are placed on the chin and two on the upper lip to ensure the best RF performance whether the phone is open or closed. With Z Flip/Z Flip 5G, antennas get hidden when the device is closed leading to inferior RF performance and call drops. The Razr 5G delivers up to +3db RF performance than the Z Flip/Z Flip 5G due to its quad antenna setup.

The pioneers of mobile telephony, Motorola offers a global 5G ready device with the support for over 300 5G NDMC bands that support 5G in over 25 markets. The Razr 5G also supports carrier aggregation (3X20 CA – 60Mhz) and 4X4 MIMO for blazing-fast 5G performance. The Z flip does not support 5G and the Z Flip 5G does not claim global band support or carrier aggregation

Verdict

Is there a need to even have a verdict section for this comparison? I mean, other than the flagship processor, its all downhill for the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip. Be it the shoddy flipping experience to the tiny display on the outside, it all just translates to a compromised final product. On the other hand, Motorola leaves no stone unturned to better the experience from the Razr 2019. It just speaks volume about the company that they are keen on making the changes based on what users prefer and not just add a new processor and release a new version without any other considerable changes like in the case of Z Flip and Z Flip 5G. The choice is still yours but we aim to help you make an informed decision.

Availability and Pricing

Motorola Razr 5G is available for pre-booking now both online on Flipkart and offline at leading retail stores across India, and goes on sale starting 12th October. It comes for an effective price of INR 1,14,999 including a 10,000 Instant Discount or Cashback on HDFC Credit Cards and Debit/Credit EMI transactions. The Samsung Z Flip 5G hasn’t even launched in India yet, so the only option left is to buy the previous generation Z flip for a hefty price.

Razr 5G users also get No Cost EMI schemes of up to 12 months (EMIs starting 10,417/month) from all leading banks and a special double data, double validity benefit with Reliance Jio 4,999 recharge that implies savings of approximately Rs. 14,997.

Social Media Evangelist | Gadget Guru | Model | Photographer | Ex- BlackBerry Boy - Now iOS | WP8 | Droid. Founder and Chief at ‘The Unbiased Blog’. I breathe in WiFi zone, prefer LTE over LIT. Ex MSFT, MCP, A+ and coder. I like news to be served to me on twitter.

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