Oppo is taking the fight to Samsung with the release of the Find N2 Flip – a clamshell foldable that is vying for the flip phone crown from the Galaxy Z Flip 4. It’s fair to anticipate plenty of questions surrounding the Galaxy Z Flip 4 vs Oppo Find N2 Flip in terms of which phone flips best.
These two handsets represent the best modern flip phones money can buy but how does Oppo’s first ditch effort stack up and can it compete with the Galaxy Z Flip 4? I took both units out for testing for a few days to find out.
Design and hinge
Despite boasting a narrower hinge, the Find N2 Flip is thinner than the Z Flip 4 when open but ever so slightly bulkier when closed. The Z Flip 4 has a tendency to catch on lint in the pocket due to the gap near the hinge when closed. No such issues with the N2 Flip thanks to the gapless design when closed.
The N2 Flip has a more satisfying clunk to it when closing the handset shut since it sits flush with the frame of the phone.
Oppo claims that the N2 Flip can withstand over 400,000 folds which is equivalent to opening and closing the phone around 100 times a day for more than ten years. Meanwhile, Samsung claims the Z Flip 4 can survive 200,000 folds before failing, translating to 100 sessions of folding each day for approximately five years.
In terms of physical design, both handsets feel high quality. I appreciate the smooth opening actions on both the N2 Flip and Z Flip 4 with just enough resistance so it doesn’t feel flimsy. While the resistance is sufficient to keep the N2 Flip unfolded at an upright angle, the Z Flip 4 offers a far wider range of angles.
It’s worth noting that the N2 Flip has an IPX4 rating, which means that while it can withstand splashes of water, it cannot be submerged. This isn’t a problem on the Z Flip 4 with its superior IPX8 rating. Neither unit sports an IP rating for dust resistance so you’ll still want to keep both phones at home on beach day.
Both models look slick and feel premium in the hand. However, I would give the edge to the N2 Flip due to the thinner frame and larger display when open as well as the narrower hinge and striking 3.26-inch outer display when closed.
Cover exterior display
The outer display or ‘cover screen’ is the main talking point of the N2 Flip and, for good reason.
The cover screen is in a vertical orientation, allowing you to see as many as six notifications. A handful of commonly used widgets have been specifically optimised for the taller screen as well. In terms of selection, Oppo hasn’t gone beyond the core six widgets that Samsung offers on its cover display. This means that you get a timer, clock, camera, weather, calendar, voice memo and earbud management. However, interacting with the widgets on the larger cover display felt more responsive than on the Z Flip 4 and overall, accidental presses were less of an issue on the N2 Flip.
The real utility of having a larger outer display though is when using it as a viewfinder. Framing selfies using the main camera was one-to-one, making composition faster than on the small outer display of the Z Flip 4.
There were some quirks I encountered during testing that made using the cover display a little tedious. For example, you can only wake the cover display by fumbling with the power button on the side of the phone instead of just double tapping on the screen. The auto-rotate of the cover display is mind-numbingly slow and sometimes doesn’t rotate at all, forcing you to physically rotate the phone just so you can read the time and notifications.
Also, there are no independent brightness controls either so whatever brightness you’ve set the internal display to is the one you’ll be stuck with for the cover display. I encountered none of these issues with the Z Flip 4.
Both handsets have gorgeous OLED displays capable of running at a silky smooth 120Hz refresh rate. The display on the N2 Flip is a nicer experience though thanks to the lack of a visible crease at almost all angles and superior anti-reflection.
Battery life and charging
The N2 Flip boasts a larger 4,300 mAh battery versus Samsung’s 3700 mAh battery while the Mediatek Dimensity 9000+ SoC powering the unit is a bit more power efficient than the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 chip found in the Galaxy Z Flip 4.
While I’ve only had a few days to test the N2 Flip, I’ve found that it on average had 20 per cent more charge left in the tank than the Z Flip 4. Both phones should still get you through a full day of light to medium use but if battery life is important to you, then the N2 Flip is the safer bet
What’s more, Oppo includes a fast charger in the box while Samsung does not. The N2 Flip charges at almost double the speed of the Z Flip 4, taking only 60 minutes to go from dead flat to 100 per cent charge.
The Z Flip 4 does however have both wireless charging and reverse charging both of which are missing on the N2 Flip.
Galaxy Z Flip 4 vs Oppo Find N2 Flip: cameras
Oppo made a lot of noise about the capabilities of the dual cameras on the Find N2 Flip but, in practice, I found them to be a little underwhelming. The 8MP wide angle lens is noticeably a step below the 12MP ultrawide found on the Z Flip 4 in terms of colour accuracy and detail.
The main 50MP camera performed much better and it tends to handle colours and contrast better than the Z Flip 4. The problem is that I generally found it to be a bit more inconsistent than the Z Flip 4’s main 12MP shooter particularly when it came to handling exposure.
On the video side, the Z Flip 4 is more capable with the ability to shoot 240fps slow-mo as well as at 4K 60fps.
Galaxy Z Flip 4 vs Oppo Find N2 Flip: Software
Samsung has had four generations to optimise the software specifically for its clamshell foldables and, as such, it does feel more refined to use. In particular, the layout of where things are and the shortcuts to quickly launch commonly used apps feel more intuitive to use on the Samsung.
For example, quickly launching the camera requires a double press of the volume button as opposed to the power button which means the shortcut won’t work at all while you’re listening to music.
The notifications system on the outer display is a little bit limited as well. While you can see a larger number of notifications on-screen, you can’t drill into Gmail notifications beyond the subject line whereas on the Z Flip 4 you can read entire emails on the outer screen if you wanted to.
That said, Oppo largely matches the feature set available on the Z Flip 4. For example, the viewfinder and camera controls will automatically split apart to the top and bottom screens respectively when the handset is propped up on an angle and you can split-screen multitask with just about any app.
Oppo will likely iron out the first-generation software woes over time but, for now, Samsung is ahead in this department.
Price and availability
The Find N2 Flip has the same $1,499 starting price however you do get 256GB of internal storage instead of the 128GB found on the base model of the Galaxy Z Flip 4. You also get a fast charger included in the box.
The Galaxy Z Flip 4 is available for purchase through retailers and carriers so you have the option of offsetting the cost over a contract period. The Find N2 Flip is only available for outright sale at JB Hi-Fi and Harvey Norman.
Galaxy Z Flip 4 vs Oppo Find N2 Flip: verdict
As a first effort, Oppo’s Find N2 Flip is an impressive outing and it addresses some of the weaker points of Samsung’s clamshell foldable with superior charging speeds and displays.
In particular, the larger 3.26-inch outer screen and its vertical orientation give it more utility over Samsung’s smaller landscape-based 1.9-inch cover screen particularly when it comes to framing shots. If Oppo can iron out the issues with the auto rotate and add the ability to wake the display at any time with a double tap, it would be the main reason to buy the N2 Flip over the Samsung.
Still, the lack of a visible crease on the N2 Flip’s main 6.8-inch display in combination with how well it handles reflections, is what makes Oppo’s clamshell a better experience since this is the display you will be using the majority of the time.
With a bit more refinement on the software side, the N2 Flip could’ve been the clear winner but as it stands, Oppo’s clamshell foldable still edges out the Galaxy Z Flip 4 overall. There’s also the strongly-reviewed Motorola Razr 2022 model to consider, but that can wait for another day.
Krishan Sharma travelled to Barcelona, Spain for the launch of the Oppo N2 Flip as a guest of Oppo Australia.