iFixit has released a video outline of the new Samsung Galaxy Z Flip, which gives us a good look inside the inside of the phone and shows that the brushes on the hinge may not prevent a lot of dust from getting into your phone.
When Samsung announced the Z Flip last week, it was highlighted that the phone's hinge has “fiber protection” to catch dust and prevent it from getting into the phone. Below you can see the enlarged marketing photo from Samsung. It looks impressive on the marketing photo, but iFixit tested this fiber protection – and the results weren't great.
Samsung's marketing image of fiber protection.
For the test, iFixit folded the Z Flip and dropped it into a bag of purple dust. After iFixit took the phone out of its pocket, it shook a lot of dust out of the phone, which you can see in the GIF below. Enough dust has got into the phone that the hinge could not open fully.
This is what this hinge looks like from the inside. You can clearly see how much purple dust is trapped in it:
Here the hinge is completely removed from the phone – and covered with purple dust. You can also see the fiber shields identified by the white rectangles from iFixit. Interestingly, they look fairly clean, which may indicate that they are not catching as much dust.
It is important to note that Samsung states in a support document that the Z Flip is not waterproof or dustproof, and that a welcome screen, according to iFixit, shows something similar when you first turn on the phone. And iFixit recognizes that its bag test does not necessarily indicate normal use in practice. Therefore, the fibers of the Z Flip may be better suited to warding off everyday pocket fluff than the very fine powder used by iFixit.
Please note that iFixit's video does not correspond to the usual complete dismantling of the website. The complete dismantling of Z Flip should go live here at 3 a.m. ET.
The Galaxy Z Flip was also demolished by Zack Nelson on his YouTube channel JerryRigEverything, and its demolition gives us great insight into the Samsung “Ultra Thin Glass” display.
In Nelson's latest durability test video, the screen showed marks and scratches like a plastic screen, although the screen is advertised as glass. When asked about Nelson's video, Samsung told The Verge that although the display is made of glass, it has a “protective layer” over it, which Nelson's demolition video confirms:
Nelson found that when you remove this protective layer, the screen stopped working – much like the screen of the original Galaxy Fold wouldn't work if you peeled off a similar screen protector. The Z Flip's bezel appears to be better than the original crease to hold this level in place. However, if it peels off, your screen may not work as intended.
And if you need proof that the screen is glass, look like this after Nelson scraped it off:
Both Nelson's and iFixit's teardown videos show that the Galaxy Z Flip is a pretty impressive piece of technology – but they also show that the phone has some flaws that can eventually lead to durability issues.