Samsung Unpacked: How to watch this week’s Galaxy Fold 5, Flip 5 event

Samsung is expected to launch the Galaxy Z Fold 5 and Galaxy Z Flip 5 this Wednesday. The new wave of foldable phones will likely be the focus of the company’s Samsung Unpacked event, which will be the first to take place in Seoul, South Korea. That will mean an early morning if you plan to watch this launch from the US.

This story is part of Samsung eventCNET’s collection of news, tips and advice on the most popular Samsung products.

While Samsung is entering its fifth consecutive year in the foldable phone market, the devices it’s launching at this year’s Unpacked come amid much more competition. Google’s $1,800 Pixel Fold is the first Pixel device to adopt a similar style to the Galaxy Z Fold series, in which a traditionally scaled phone opens to reveal a tablet-sized internal screen. OnePlus is also rumored to have its own foldable phone on the way, which could further disrupt the space.

And after taking a few years off from the US market, Motorola’s new $1,000 Razr Plus is now eyeing Samsung’s Z Flip series, with the latest rumor including a larger coverage screen that can run most Android apps. We also know that Motorola has a cheaper Razr model on the way with a smaller coverage screen.

And it’s not just the phones. Samsung’s Summer Unpacked events often include an update to the Galaxy Watch series. While the Samsung Galaxy Watch now faces competition from Google’s Pixel Watch, on the software side Samsung and Google maintain a partnership to develop Wear OS. However, Samsung often differentiates its watches via its own software improvements, and a new Galaxy Watch is likely to provide a spotlight for any new Samsung Health updates.

CNET will be covering the upcoming Samsung Unpacked event live as it happens, and here’s how you can watch all the reveals next week. This will include a live blog and live watch party, covering the buildup to the next phone event and going through all the new devices as they are unveiled.

Samsung’s Unpacked invitation makes it pretty clear that foldable phones are in.

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How to watch the next Samsung Unpacked event

Samsung’s next Unpacked event begins on Wednesday, July 26 at 4am PT, 7am ET, 12pm in the UK, and 9pm in Australia. The first hour is because Samsung will hold the event at 20:00 local time in Seoul.

Samsung will live stream Unpacked announcements on Samsung.com and Samsung’s YouTube channel.

CNET’s live blog will launch the day before Samsung Unpacked, and our live watch party will be streamed on CNET’s YouTube channel.

What are we expecting at Samsung’s Unpacked event?

Based on the Samsung Unpacked invitation, foldable phones will almost certainly be the focus of the upcoming event.

Samsung is using the tagline “Join the Downside” to promote the July 26 event while showcasing a phone flipping and turning in its GIF graphic (watchful eyes may catch two silhouettes; possibly from both sets of foldouts). This likely indicates updates to the Galaxy Z Fold series and Galaxy Z Flip series.

Samsung also traditionally showcases its latest Galaxy Watch alongside its foldable phones, and this may also come with announcements related to Samsung Health. Samsung has already teased that its upcoming One UI 5 Watch software will include a greater focus on sleep and heart rate tracking. Such features could point to the future of the next Galaxy Watch, although software updates will also be available for previous Galaxy Watch models.

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John Kim/CNET

What do the rumors about Samsung’s Unpacked ads say?

The rumored Galaxy Z Fold 5 and Galaxy Z Flip 5 could receive minor redesigns to give each foldable phone a better edge on their shape.

One of the first rumors about the Z Fold 5, reported late last year by the Korean news outlet The Elec, indicated the possibility of an S Pen slot that recalls the Galaxy Note series. If so, that could improve the Z Fold 5’s positioning as a productivity device more akin to a mini computer. Samsung has already incorporated features like a mini trackpad into the Z Fold series, to be used when the device is folded in half to allow navigation as you would a laptop.

Following the Pixel Fold’s ability to close completely, the Galaxy Z Fold 5 could also get a new hinge, which would allow for a less noticeable crease and a slimmer profile. This according to several Korean news outlets, including The Elec, ET News and leakers Ice universe.

Meanwhile, rumors about the Z Flip 5 mostly point towards a redesigned and larger coverage screen. If true, this would allow the Z Flip 5 to be much more useful when closed, ideally using miniature versions of Android apps that fill its larger screen. Several purported renders of the Z Flip 5, which include an April SamMobile report and a more recent report from 9to5Google, purport to show a larger coverage screen that can display a keyboard or widgets.

Samsung Galaxy Watch 5

Galaxy Watch 5 from Samsung.

Lexy Savvides/CNET

The alleged Galaxy Watch 6 could also undergo a number of changes to both the design and the way it is sold. According to a report from 9to5Google, the Galaxy Watch 6 series may include a 47mm Watch 6 Classic model, which would be the largest Galaxy Watch yet. The Galaxy Watch 6 could also have a bigger battery, with Android Central reporting a possible capacity of 300mAh and 425mAh for different models.

Leaker SnoopyTech reports that the Galaxy Watch 6 could also be sold as part of a “business model,” which could imply a number of possibilities. For example, Google’s Fitbit Premium subscription unlocks additional features and stats that aren’t available to you without being a member. Amazon tried a similar subscription with its Halo wearables, which are now defunct.

Samsung could also show off a new iteration of the Galaxy Buds headphones or additional features that would be coming to its other Galaxy phones. We’ll find out soon, when Samsung’s Unpacked event hits on July 26th.


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