First looks at the Samsung Galaxy Fold are equal parts awe, surprise, and crease concerns

Update 2:30pm EST: Added more reactions to the Galaxy Fold.

In less than two weeks time, you’ll be able to walk into an AT&T store and buy a Galaxy Fold for the eye-popping price of $1,980, or $66 a month for the next 30 months. And now we know a little more about what you’re going to get for your money—and it might be hard for some people to look past that crease.

Samsung has allowed a cadre of journalists exclusive access to the Galaxy Fold, and the impressions were fairly unanimous: The Galaxy Fold is certainly cool but not without its flaws. Journalists walked away impressed with the device as a first-generation product, with TechCrunch’s Brian Heater calling it “a pretty solid first take at a new smartphone paradigm” and Jessica Dolcourt of CNET saying the Fold “feels solid and surprisingly premium.” 

However, it’s far from perfect, and the vertical crease down the middle garnered most of the criticism. For instance, Geoffrey A. Fowler of The Washington Post said that while he was able to eventually “made peace with the crease” he compared it to the very visible pleat on a pair of polyester pants. Writing for The Verge, Dieter Bohn had a similar experience, saying “you can see the crease from an angle, but it mostly disappears when you are looking at it head-on.”

However, while he also adjusted to it after a short time, Bohn noted that he could also “feel the crease, which is a little disconcerting.” Dolcourt agreed, saying she could “feel the hinge mechanism underneath” while pressing down on the screen, but didn’t really notice it when “swiping lightly.”

However, as Fowler writes, the crease “doesn’t get in the way of reading a story or watching a video, and mostly disappears when the screen is lit up.” The notch, on the other hand, is another story. Bohn said the notch definitely “does get in the way sometimes,” noting that YouTube videos were cut off when in full-screen.

However, Samsung has paid a great deal of attention to the way the OS works on the Fold. Samsung says you can open three apps at once on the Fold, but support is limited for the new UI. Even apps that are optimized for the Fold, such as Netflix, can be buggy, as Fowler saw when he tried to open an app alongside Netflix and it opened “directly in the middle of the screen.” Bohn called the software “surprisingly acceptable,” given Android’s long history of issues with app and UI fragmentation. 

Samsung also divulged more about the specs of the phone, which is similar to the high-end Galaxy S10+:

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