If you’ve decided against upgrading to Samsung’s latest foldable or smartwatch, you won’t be left totally empty-handed. Samsung is going to add a bunch of the new features introduced with its Z Fold 4, Z Flip 4 and Watch 5 to most of its older models.
The software update will add a functionality to everything from the original Z Fold to the previous-generation Z Fold 3. It’s a questionable business decision from Samsung, but it’s sure to keep the customers happy. With the latest features, you’ll probably be able to squeeze out a couple more years out of your Z Fold 3 or Z Flip 3 before feeling like you need to upgrade.
The update includes UI features like improved cover screen functionality and easier multi-window gestures for foldables, and better health monitoring for the smartwatches. If you were on the fence about upgrading your older Samsung devices, it might be worth waiting until next year since you’ll have plenty of new features to keep you busy until then.
New UI, who dis? — The new features are coming straight from the One UI 4.1.1 that’s on the Z Fold 4 and the Z Flip 4, and the One UI Watch 4.5 that we see on the Watch Series 5.
First up, Samsung is adding the Taskbar feature that lets you easily switch between apps. You can also drag and drop any of the apps from the Taskbar to open up the Multi-Window function. If you have a pair of apps you always open together, you can pair them up as one button and save it to the Taskbar. The new UI even has a bunch of gestures that let you switch full-screen apps to a pop-up window or have it split between your screens.
Next up: Samsung is adding several features to Quick Shot mode for the older foldables. With Dual Preview you (and whoever you’re shooting) see the shot at the same time. For older Z Flip phones, the Quick Shot mode on the Cover Screen will also show the correct ratio when shooting portrait orientation shots. Switching from Quick Shot mode to Flex mode will be a lot easier and won’t interrupt your photo or video.
Samsung also added a bunch of new functions to the Cover Screen, like making calls to favorite contacts, dialing back missed calls, replying to texts with voice-to-text and emojis, and Quick Settings feature that lets you adjust settings like Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, airplane mode and flashlight.
Smarter watches — There will be six new watch faces from the Watch 5 coming to Watch 4. The new update will also throw in a QWERTY keyboard to communicate through your Galaxy watch, along with the existing voice recognition and handwriting tools. For the Watch 3 and the Watch Active 2, Samsung is adding two watch faces and a snore detection function for better sleep quality analysis. Samsung is even introducing blood pressure measurements and ECG to the Watch 3 and Watch Active 2.
The software updates for the Z Fold 3 and the Z Flip 3 already started on September 5 and will gradually roll out globally. The updates are also coming to the Z Fold 2, Z Flip, and the original Z Fold. The latest watch UI will be supported by the Watch 4 and Watch 4 Classic, while a minor software update with only some of the features of One UI Watch 4.5 are coming to the older smartwatches.