Competition is good for many reasons, but looking at the Oppo Find N2 Flip, there are two things in particular that stand out. The first is price. At £849 (around $1,025), Oppo’s foldable flip phone is £150 more affordable than Samsung’s comparable Galaxy Z Flip 4 was at launch in the UK, and that’s currently Oppo’s only serious competitor outside of China. (Although the Find N2 is releasing “globally,” Oppo’s definition doesn’t extend to North America.) Undercutting it on price like this is important, especially if Oppo can pressure Samsung to cut prices to stay competitive.
Second is variety. Although Oppo’s foldable has the same overall form factor as Samsung’s Z Flip devices, which fold from a regular size smartphone down into a compact square to make them more pocketable, it has a much larger cover display for viewing notifications and controlling features. It means there’s a lot of potential here to do more with Oppo’s foldable without having to flip it open first.
Yes, at the end of the day, you’re still going to be flipping open the phone for most tasks. But considering it undercuts Samsung on price with a very comparable set of features, the Find N2 Flip ends up being a surprisingly competitive alternative to the Z Flip 4 — so long as you trust Oppo’s durability claims.
Okay, calling Oppo Samsung’s only foldable competition internationally is only really half true. But — in the markets where Oppo is selling its new flip phone at least — the Find N2 Flip is the only serious competition facing the Z Flip 4 as of this writing. Motorola hasn’t updated its Razr in over two years (in Western markets, at least), and Huawei’s P50 Pocket ships without Google’s all-important apps and services. There’s also the upcoming international launch of Honor’s foldable Magic VS to consider, though it’s a larger foldable that’s closer to a Z Fold than a Z Flip.
Given the lack of other options, it’s great to see Oppo offer such polished hardware on the Find N2 Flip. When folded, the phone is a neat little square with no visible screen gap, and if there’s a difference in thickness between the hinge end and where the two ends of the screen meet, I wasn’t able to measure it. The phone is 16mm thick when folded and weighs 191 grams. That’s a hair thinner and heavier than the Z Flip 4 (which measures 17.1mm at its thickest point and weighs 187g), though only by the smallest of amounts. Oppo’s phone is available in a choice of black or purple.
This seamless design continues when you open up the phone and get a proper look at its hinge. There’s no hint of a gap on either edge where large debris could get underneath the folding display, and the mechanism feels reassuringly smooth yet weighty. The screen crease is also minimal — difficult to see when the screen is on and even tricky to spot when the screen is off without reflecting light off it just so.
Once you open it up, the internal screen is a nice and colorful 6.8-inch 1080p OLED and has a 9:21 aspect ratio that feels tall without becoming excessive as well as a responsive 120Hz refresh rate. I would suggest turning the “Display size” setting down to “Small” in the phone’s settings, however. The default “Standard” option renders text a little too big for my liking and means that you don’t see much of a benefit from the longer 21:9 aspect ratio when it comes to things like the number of emails you can see at a time.
When Samsung released its first-generation Galaxy Fold in 2019, there was a lot of discussion about how durable foldable devices would be, not helped by the fact that the first batch of Samsung’s review devices broke almost the second journalists got their hands on them. Three generations later and we now have a pretty good idea of how durable Samsung’s foldables are in the real world. They’re not “break in 24 hours” fragile, but you shouldn’t expect them to be as scratch or dust resistant as a standard non-folding phone.
400,000 folds is theoretically enough for around 10 years of use
But that’s Samsung, and this is Oppo, which means we don’t have experience with several generations of handsets to draw from. The Find N2 Flip is the first Oppo foldable released outside of China, and it’s difficult to establish how durable the company’s initial Find N may have been for buyers in its home market. But in theory, the Find N2 Flip is rated to withstand 400,000 folding cycles (which includes both an open and a close). That’s enough for 100 openings and closures a day for 10 years — and double the 200,000 that Samsung advertises for the Z Flip 4. Like Samsung, Oppo uses a layer of ultra-thin glass in its folding display, though it has a lower IP rating of IPX4 for water resistance compared to Samsung’s IPX8 rating. That could prove significant to the long-term durability of Oppo’s phone.
So, in theory at least, Oppo’s Find N2 Flip should survive longer so long as you’re doing the kinds of opening and folding that it’s been tested for in a laboratory setting. But when water gets involved, Oppo’s device is only splashproof — not waterproof — though I hasten to add that intentionally immersing your phone is a bad idea, regardless of its IP rating. And we don’t have much prior experience to see how these promises might shake out in practice.
The Find N2 Flip’s 6.8-inch screen when unfolded.
The cover display typically shows you the time first, with options to swipe for more.
On the opposite side of the device from the internal folding display is the Find N2 Flip’s cover display. Compared to the Samsung Z Flip 4’s 1.9-inch external display, its 3.26-inch sizing and 9:17 aspect ratio feel massive and theoretically mean it’s possible to do much more with the phone without having to unfold it. It’s almost like having a little phone on the outside of your big phone. That ability to do more with it ends up being true to an extent in practice, but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t end up unfolding the phone the majority of the time I picked it up.
Let’s start with what the cover screen can do and give props to Oppo for addressing one of our complaints with the Samsung Z Flip 4. With the Find N2 Flip, it’s actually possible to edit the precanned messages you can use to respond to people via the cover display. Oppo’s default list is a little impersonal, and many of the messages have passive aggressive periods at the end. But with a little tweaking, you can come up with a list of short responses that you’d actually want to send to people. There’s no voice dictation here like with Samsung, however. When I asked Google Assistant to compose a WhatsApp message, the phone complained that I needed to “unlock it” (read: unfold it) first.
Elsewhere, Oppo’s built-in widgets get a decent amount of use out of the cover display. The increased screen real estate is especially helpful for the camera widget since it’s the right aspect ratio to show you a full viewfinder at a usable size. Meanwhile, the weather widget not only shows the day’s weather but also the exact conditions for the next four hours. There’s a neat timer widget to quickly set countdowns for stuff like cooking or brushing your teeth. And of course, you can see far more notifications at once without having to scroll.
Inevitably, I found myself needing to flip open the phone for most tasks, and it’s occasionally frustrating that the cover screen widgets can’t do more given the amount of screen space available to them. If you get an email, you can only ever read its subject line, with no opportunity to read its body text. You can see the next four hours of weather conditions, but you can’t scroll to see more. There are timers that count down but no stopwatch to count up.
I also wish there were a simpler shortcut to open the camera widget on the cover display. You can theoretically double-press either of the phone’s volume keys to open the camera, but the shortcut only works when the display is off, and by default, the display will automatically turn on when you pick up the phone. So most of the time, I’d pick up the phone, press the power button to turn the display off, and then double-tap the volume button to get to the camera.
Overall, despite its large size, the cover display often feels like it’s falling short of its potential. It can be slow to wake up, and I often found it displaying the time upside down for half a second before swiveling around. Other times, it refused to respond to my touch presses, thinking that it was still in a pocket being accidentally nudged. Maybe it’s unfair to ask all of this from a cover display, but its increased size inevitably leads to increased expectations.
Big cover screen, medium cover functionality
Like the Z Flip, the Find N2 Flip also has some features designed for use while partially folded. It’s nice, if a little gimmicky, to be able to prop it open on a table like a laptop to take hands-free selfies or video calls, and I didn’t experience any of the mic issues when recording video selfies that my colleague Allison Johnson reported having with the Z Flip 4. Technically, you’re also able to prop the phone up like this to watch video on YouTube, but in practice, it often means watching a 16:9 YouTube video squashed into one half of the display with massive black bars, and I wouldn’t recommend it. The built-in stereo speakers get plenty loud, but they don’t work miracles in terms of bass or detail.
It’s just about possible to unfold the phone with one hand, but it’s clearly not designed for it, and you’ll inevitably end up tapping something on the screen in the process. It feels much safer to use two hands. Once you do unfold it, the Find N2 Flip behaves much like any other 6.8-inch slab smartphone. Performance feels snappy thanks to its 120Hz refresh rate, and the phone’s MediaTek Dimensity 9000 Plus processor keeps up well. I didn’t notice any hitching as I switched between apps on my review device with 8GB of RAM, and the international version of the phone is available with 256GB of storage.
The Find N2 Flip’s battery is a weak point. Despite the 4,300mAh battery (bigger than the Z Flip 4’s 3,700mAh), I averaged just three and a half hours of screen time between charges. I never had the phone die on me before the end of the day, but the one time I forgot to charge it overnight after a heavy day of use, the phone was down to around 10 percent by morning. There’s very little battery headroom here. At least charging is relatively quick. Oppo advertises that the 44W charger included in the box can charge the phone to 50 percent in 23 minutes and to 100 percent in under an hour, which aligned with my experience. There’s no wireless charging here like you get with Samsung.
The phone ships with Oppo’s Android 13-based ColorOS out of the box, and the company says it’ll release four major Android version updates for the phone and five years of security updates (a first for the company). For reference, Samsung now offers four years of Android updates for phones including the Z Flip 4 and up to five years of security updates.
The larger cover screen makes a great viewfinder.
One of the Find N2 Flip’s party tricks is that you can use its main camera to take selfies with the cover display. This gives you the benefit of using the phone’s 50-megapixel main camera rather than the 32-megapixel front-facing camera that needs to fit inside a small hole-punch notch. But in practice, I didn’t think there was much of a difference between the performance of the two cameras, and in some cases, I even preferred what the selfie camera was capable of.
Otherwise, I won’t spend too much time talking about the Find N2 Flip’s camera performance because, in truth, I think it’s so average that it shouldn’t be a reason for or against buying this phone. In daylight, it favors punchy colors and crisp details, but it doesn’t overdo either to an artificial extent unless you’re using its lower-resolution ultrawide camera, which appears to be overly processed to make up for its eight-megapixel sensor, resulting in images that look a little too smooth and noiseless.
Close-up images look good until you get too close for the cameras to be able to focus — there’s no potential for anything approaching macrophotography here. Low-light photography is okay, with the Oppo Find N2 Flip producing usable smartphone images when the Sun goes down, but video capture is a little disappointing, with fine details shimmering and juddering in the resulting footage.
At £849, the Find N2 Flip has the same starting price as Samsung’s Galaxy S23. But while you can and should expect flagship camera performance out of even Samsung’s entry-level Galaxy S device, that’s not really the case here. As with the Z Flip 4, performance isn’t terrible but maybe more in line with what you’d expect from a midrange phone rather than a flagship in 2023.
With its larger cover screen and £849 price tag, Oppo’s Find N2 Flip is a compelling alternative to Samsung’s Z Flip 4. Yes, I wish its cover display felt more responsive and had more functionality, but between acting as a better camera viewfinder and being able to quickly fire off customized responses to messages, there’s an okay list of tasks you can accomplish without fully unfolding the phone.
Elsewhere, there are more compromises. It’s great that it has 44W fast charging, but it’s a shame that battery life isn’t better in the first place. Its photographs are okay, but videos are disappointing. In a lab, 400,000 folds is an impressive number to achieve, but the phone’s lower IP rating for water resistance and Oppo’s lack of a foldable track record in the West is worth being aware of.
Barring any major durability problems down the line, the Oppo Find N2 Flip is a great alternative to Samsung’s Z Flip 4 — provided you’re in a country where it’s actually sold, that is.
Agree to continue: Find N2 Flip
Every smart device now requires you to agree to a series of terms and conditions before you can use it — contracts that no one actually reads. It’s impossible for us to read and analyze every single one of these agreements. But we started counting exactly how many times you have to hit “agree” to use devices when we review them since these are agreements most people don’t read and definitely can’t negotiate.
To use the Oppo Find N2 Flip, you must agree to:
- Oppo’s User Agreement
- Oppo’s User Privacy Security and Protection
- Google Play’s Terms of Service
- Google Install Updates and Apps
In total, that’s six compulsory agreements and eight optional features / agreements.
Photography by Jon Porter / The Verge