In the past, Samsung phones have not held up for long periods of time. It was almost like, if you had a Galaxy S8, it wasn’t a question of if the screen would break, but more of when would it break. Various tests showed that the Galaxy S8 and other Galaxy phones couldn’t handle accidental drops that many other smartphones could. That meant that you were having to more or less plan to have protective gear with your phone, shell out extra cash for insurance, or put some money aside for the inevitable accident that will ruin your display.
Eventually, Samsung wisened up and now their Galaxy line is rather indestructible. But some of their other phones, such as the Galaxy Z Fold 3, Z Fold 4, or Z Flip 3, are foldable. While a foldable phone may seem like it’s also indestructible, that doesn’t mean it won’t get broken. Something revealed recently in a Z Fold 4 design leak was just how bulky it will be. So if something does happen to your phone, it may cost you more to replace it than you realize.
Samsung’s built-in screen protectors
Foldable phones, while they can be easier to carry around and offer you a lot of flexibility, still aren’t as durable as their counterparts. Phones like the Galaxy S22 Ultra are durable to a point and can hold up to most accidental falls. The foldable phones, like the Z Flip and Z Fold lines, are good against accidental falls, and that has a lot to do with the pre-applied screen protector on the inner screen that Samsung adds in.
These can get scratched or dinged up the more you use your phone. The frustrating thing is, there’s no way to get them easily fixed, other than sending yours away to Samsung. However, if you don’t live in a major market, this could take a long time. Then you’re without your phone for a longer period of time.
Pricing guide for repairs
Also, if you don’t have a warranty, or you’re passed yours, it’ll cost you. Take a look at the Samsung Direct pricing guide for repairing screens. Notice that there are plenty of moderate costs for the outer screen, which is the one that’s more commonly going to get scratched up. For example, getting a Z Fold 3’s outer screen repaired will cost you $149. But to have to get the inner screen repaired, which is a much harder ordeal, as we discussed above, will set you back $479. There are complete other phones you can buy for $479. Many repair shops don’t even offer internal screen repair as an option.
The Galaxy Fold is no better. The inner screen replacement for that is $599. A Z Fold 2 is $549 and a Z Flip is $499. Now, Samsung does offer you a caveat if your Galaxy Z Fold 2 was purchased before December 31, 2021. You’re then eligible for a one-time screen replacement price of $149. The same goes for Galaxy Fold purchased before December 31, 2020. Also, a Z Flip purchased before December 31, 2020, gets a one-time screen replacement price of $119.
You can go in person and maybe get a same-day replacement. But if you’re not in an area like Dallas or Houston (which are highlighted on the Samsung website), you may be out of luck. These problems will likely continue with the more foldable phones that Samsung releases. Unless you want to cough up extra dough, I’d say protect your phone as much as you can.
Editor’s note: This story was originally published on May 10, 2017, and has since been updated.