Google Pixel Fold Review: I’m Sold on Foldable Phones.. If Only They Didn’t Cost So Much!

I recently had the opportunity to review the new Google Pixel Fold smartphone, and I must say, it’s an intriguing piece of technology. This is the first foldable device I’ve tested and I really like what Google has put together here. The downside is that it costs a ridiculous $1799. See my full review here and you can find the phone for sale at Best Buy here (compensated affiliate link).

The Pixel Fold is powered by Google’s tensor G2 processor, the same chip that can be found in their more traditional phones like the entry-level Pixel 7A. It boasts 12 GB of RAM and 256 GB of storage. There is no SD card slot for storage expansion unfortunately.

The displays are impressive. The front display is a 5.8-inch OLED, while the inside reveals a 7.6-inch OLED. Both displays offer a 120 hertz refresh rate, ensuring a smooth user experience.

One thing that stood out to me was the phone’s compactness. I am a “small phone” guy and prefer a more compact device that’s easily pocketable to a larger one. The Fold fits comfortably in my pocket, and when unfolded, it offers a larger display, which is great for browsing and multitasking. It’s close in size to an iPad mini or other 8 inch tablet. Unfortunately, there’s a visible crease down the middle of the screen, which some might find distracting. I noticed it, and while many say you get used to it, I found it constantly catching my eye.

The Pixel Fold’s dual-display design offers a unique opportunity for app developers to enhance the user experience. Some apps have been optimized to recognize the device’s foldable nature and adjust their interface accordingly. For instance, the YouTube app adjusts the video playback area when the phone is partially folded, nudging the content to fit perfectly above the fold, essentially turning the bottom half into a stand. Similarly, productivity apps like Google Docs and Photos can run side by side, allowing users to drag and drop content between them.

However, not all apps have been optimized for this dual-display setup, and some might require manual adjustments to fully utilize the available screen real estate.Like other Android tablets and phones, most apps can run split screen even if they’re not optimized for larger screens.

The camera system is versatile. The back of the phone houses three cameras: an ultra-wide, a telephoto, and a standard 48-megapixel lens. The photos I took were sharp, detailed, and the colors were vibrant. There are two front facing cameras, one for when the phone is folded and another when unfolded. The folded selfie cam is the better of the two. Google also has a neat mode that turns the rear camera system into a selfie cam.

Gaming on the Pixel Fold was fun. From Android games to retro gaming, the experience was smooth. The larger screen real estate made gameplay more immersive. However, when compared to devices like the iPhone, the Pixel Fold’s gaming performance could be better.

In conclusion, the Pixel Fold is a promising device. Its foldable design offers a unique user experience, and while there are some areas of improvement, it’s a solid first-generation attempt by Google. The price might be a deterrent for some, but if you’re looking for innovation and a fresh take on smartphones, the Pixel Fold is worth considering.

I hope the industry finds some ways to bring the price point on these foldables down to make the technology more accessible. Smartphones have become quite stale these last few years so anything new and exciting would be a welcome boost to the industry.

Disclosure: Google provided the phone free of charge for my review. However they did not review or approve the content before it was uploaded nor did they offer any additional compensation.

First Impressions of the Pixel Fold

I recently had the opportunity to unbox and get a firsthand look at Google’s Pixel Fold, their entry into the foldable phone market. This is the first foldable device I’ve ever had the pleasure of handling. My latest video is a rundown of my initial impressions.

As I unwrapped the Pixel Fold, the first thing I noticed was its weight. It felt heavier than the standard smartphones I’ve used, likely due to its dual screens.

The phone sports a screen on the front and unfolds to reveal a larger display. One thing that immediately caught my eye was the visible crease when the phone was fully opened. It’s more pronounced than I anticipated but it’s a characteristic of the current foldable tech.

Both OLED displays are vibrant and crisp, and the concept of transitioning from a standard phone display to a larger tablet-like screen is intriguing. The device isn’t overly thick, but it’s certainly chunkier than a regular smartphone.

Google included some tips for maintaining the screen’s integrity, emphasizing the importance of avoiding getting sand and other materials caught in the crease and not removing the pre-installed screen protector. The box also contained a USB-C charging cable, an OTG adapter, and a SIM popper. However, a notable omission was the charger itself. The phone charges over USB-C and works with Qi compatible chargers too.

The Pixel Fold boasts a Tensor 2 processor, 12GB of RAM, and 256GB of storage. There’s no SD card slot. It has a fingerprint reader integrated into the power switch for unlocking the device quickly. The Fold is equipped with multiple cameras: a front-facing one and another inside for video calls, along with three on the back. The rear camera includes a 48MP primary camera, a 10.8MP ultra-wide, and a 10.8MP telephoto lens.

The Pixel Fold is an exciting piece of tech, and I’m eager to delve deeper into its features and capabilities. The ever-present crease might be a point of contention for some, but it’s a small trade-off for the versatility the device offers. I’ll be spending more time with the Pixel Fold and will share a comprehensive review soon. If there’s anything specific you’d like to know, drop a comment, and I’ll do my best to address it in my upcoming review.

Disclosure: the Pixel Fold was sent to the channel free of charge by Google.