Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 battery life: can the Fold 3 last a day?

Samsung’s Galaxy Fold 3 had to face a plethora of tough challenges to function. It’s an actual foldable smartphone with a display that bends straight down the middle, that’s pretty crazy in its own right. But then, there’s the challenge of making a durable hinge and fitting all of the regular smartphone components… somewhere.

That includes battery. And, while the Fold 3’s battery is not gynormous, it’s still pretty generous with a capacity of 4,400 mAh. Still, that capacity needs to power a pretty big, 7.6-inch screen on the inside, and a 6.2-inch panel on the outside. Both capable of running at 120 Hz at that. So, how long does the Galaxy Z Fold 3 battery last and does it have enough gas in the tank to actually take you through a busy day?
In our time reviewing the device, we found that it’s capable of lasting quite a while — even with our busy review process, when we are downloading new apps, taking sample photos, or constantly parading the device around for device pictures, it didn’t hit that 0% mark unless we forced it to. At the end of the work day, we’d have about 20%-30% left, enough to comfortably get home and set it on a charger.

Of course, we ran it through our tests to get a clearer picture on how the phone performs with the most popular tasks — web browsing, video watching, and gaming. Let’s take a closer look.

Galaxy Z Fold 3 battery test: web browsing

Our web browsing test simulates a constant usage of the phone to load different web pages and scroll through them. The Z Fold 3 managed to keep its big, 7.6-inch screen on for 8 hours, which is a pretty respectable result. However, you can see that it’s easily outshined by models that have smaller panels to light — especially the Galaxy S21 Ultra, which lasted an insane 14 hours on the same test.
It doesn’t make the Z Fold 3 unusable, but certainly shows some of the sacrifices you’d need to make if you crave that book fold.

Galaxy Z Fold 3 battery test: YouTube video

Then, we moved on to an infinite YouTube playlist and let the phone run until it is fully drained. Again, you can see that the Fold 3 wasn’t performing as well as other Samsung heavy-hitters, but the difference here is not so drastic. In fact, one might argue that 7 hours of video playback on the Galaxy Z Fold 3 is more than enough — you can literally burn through your whole work day by binge-watching YouTube videos. Also, don’t do that.

Galaxy Z Fold 3 battery test: gaming

What good is a big, big foldable screen if you can’t use it to score the occasional headshot? Well, you can definitely use the Galaxy Z Fold 3 for gaming, as most games scale appropriately and look big and immersive.

Does that take its toll on the battery? Well, yeah — as you can see, your gaming session will have to be cut short around the 5 hour mark. Interestingly enough, the same applies for the Galaxy S21 Ultra. So, if your main goal is gaming on the smartphone — the Z Fold 3 is still on the table.

Galaxy Z Fold 3 battery endurance: final thoughts

As you can see from these tests, the Galaxy Z Fold 3 is capable of some impressive screen-on times. It almost looks like it should be able to last two days if you don’t use the phone all that much, doesn’t it?

Unfortunately, it wasn’t so in our experience with the phone. Since Samsung’s software is so feature-rich and there’s always stuff going on in the background, we found that the Z Fold 3 would lose battery in standby at a rate, which didn’t allow us to enjoy that “two-day battery life”. Use it or not — the Z Fold 3 will last you a day, day and a half at the most. But hey, at least it does last, right?

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