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Samsung’s latest pitch for the Z Fold 5: two iPhones at the same time

Samsung’s latest pitch for the Z Fold 5: two iPhones at the same time


Don’t have a Samsung Z Fold 5? You can make an iPhone sandwich with Samsung’s Try Galaxy app.

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A picture of three sets of two iPhones, showing what the Try Galaxy app looks like spread across both devices. The left side shows the One UI homescreen, the middle shows multitasking, and the right side shows an air hockey game.
Try Galaxy lets you see what OneUI looks like on two iPhones.
Image: Samsung

Hey, wait a minute, that Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 is actually just two iPhones in a trench coat!

That’s the idea behind the latest update to the Try Galaxy web app, which, when running on two iPhones, offers a Samsung One UI demonstration spread across both screens. Samsung says it lets iOS users try out the foldable’s benefits, like watching content on an “immersive” screen, or sample productivity features like dragging and dropping across both screens thanks to its multitasking abilities — something Samsung does well and that even the iPad could use work on.

To make it happen, you just have to visit the website or scan a QR code on two iPhones, add the web app to your homescreen, and then tape them together (the tape is my own recommendation) to start folding to your heart’s content (via 9to5Google).

The hockey game demo on the Try Galaxy app, displayed across an iPhone 13 Pro (left) and an iPhone 13 Pro Max (right).
We tried Galaxy on a pair of iPhones.
Image: Wes Davis / The Verge

Samsung says the app also lets users learn about Galaxy Z Flip and Z Fold phones through its “FlexCam experience,” showing them how being able to fold their phone can capture “memorable moments in a variety of creative angles” or view selfies using the cover screen found on the Z Flip — something the iPhone can’t simulate, since, you know, it doesn’t fold and doesn’t have a screen on the back.

I went ahead and tried it out. Did it convince me to switch to the Z Fold 5? Well, no... it’s a guided experience that doesn’t give you much freedom, and it kept telling me I had an unstable network before crashing. Maybe I do, or maybe it’s because one of the phones is running the iOS 17 beta.

But showing off the benefits of a folding phone with an unbroken screen across the whole thing by putting it on two separate phones and just hoping they’ll play nice is a goofy idea. Especially if you already have an iPad, because it really ends up being more of a Samsung tablet demo, and not a very compelling one at that. In the end, it just reminds me of early, gimmicky app store apps more than anything.

This is the latest in a long line of Samsung trolls on Apple’s phones. However, given the history of what happened after Samsung made fun of Apple for not including a power adapter with new iPhones or dropping the headphone jack, I have to assume that it will soon release a version of this app for its own slab phones so Galaxy S owners can grab some duct tape and go to town.

If you want to try it on your iPhones, here’s the QR code. Have at it.

A picture of the QR code surrounded by glyphs, with text on the right entreating you to “Try Galaxy on your non-android phone” by scanning the QR code.
This QR code could make your iPhone into a Z Fold 5, sort of.
Image: Samsung

Update Monday August 21, 2023, 4:25PM ET: Added details about the actual experience, along with a photo, after trying it out.