Samsung’s new Galaxy Z Flip clamshell foldable has a cool new feature that can split the phone’s enormous vertical real estate into a top half and a bottom half, and Google tells The Verge that other phone makers will soon be able to build that feature into their phones, too.
The feature, which Samsung calls “Flex mode,” can split the phone’s display into two four-inch screens that can each show different types of content while you’re using an app. Samsung gives the example of watching a YouTube video on the top half of the screen while searching for other videos or reading comments on the bottom screen. My colleague Dieter Bohn also got to test the mode with a Google Duo video call, which showed a video chat on the top half of the screen and call controls on the bottom half of the screen.
Samsung says it worked with Google to design Flex mode for the Galaxy Z Flip, and Google tells us it will be available to other phone makers soon. That’s good to hear, in my opinion, as Flex mode seems like it could be a genuinely useful feature for potential clamshell-style foldables like the Z Flip. The mode actually makes me think of how Nintendo successfully split content across two screens in games for the Nintendo DS and the Nintendo 3DS, and I’m excited to see how something similar might be used in phones.