Mistaken as the Galaxy Golden 3 in earlier leaks, Korean electronics giant Samsung have quietly revealed their latest handset, the W2016. If you’re familiar with Samsung’s line of clamshell smartphones running Android, then it should come as no surprise that many thought this latest flip phone was going to be the successor to the Galaxy Golden 2.
This new flip phone is no underpowered feature phone though. Sporting two 3.9” AMOLED displays pushing 1280×768 pixels, an Exynos 7420 chip, 3GB of RAM and 64GB of internal storage, this flip phone is essentially a Galaxy S6 in a forgotten form factor. The primary camera is no slouch either as it likely the same high end 16-megapixel rear snapper as that in Samsung’s early 2015 flagship, with a 5-megapixel front camera to boot.
Samsung’s W2016 will run Android 5.1.1 Lollipop with TouchWiz out of the box and the Korean manufacturer has also included modern elements like fast wired and wireless charging. Powering the device is a 2,000 mAh battery, which should be more than enough for the relatively small 3.9” screens to stay lit for a respectable amount of time.
To many, the clamshell form factor is a thing of the past and it seems weird that Samsung would put so much into reviving it. But to some niche markets in Asia and nostalgic fans of this once glorious design, this is a welcomed move and we can see why.
Aesthetically, the W2016 looks exquisite. The body is a sculpted aluminium frame that kind of emulates the Galaxy S6’s design, with a curved metal back and metallic accents. The screen sits flush into the front panel and the gentle slope towards the bottom of the phone gives it a much sleeker look. It looks like the kind of sophisticated device meant for the 0.01%, and not some playboy’s new gadget.
Availability of the device at this point seems to be limited to China, without any news on whether or not it will make it to the rest of the world. While we do not have information on the pricing of the device, we wouldn’t be too surprised if it will eventually be sold elsewhere.
On paper, the W2016 looks like a great way to bring the clamshell into today’s standards. For those of us who have used flip phones in the past, there is no doubt that we will remember this form factor fondly. Let’s face it, there aren’t many more satisfying ways to end a conversation than with the solid click of a clamshell snapping shut.