Royole FlexPai 2: Unboxing + Hands-On With Newest Foldable

Hey, everybody. So when most of you guys think
of the foldable phone, you think of the Samsung Galaxy
Fold; the is the Fold 2, or maybe the Huawei Mate X or
maybe Samsung Galaxy Z Flip. But, actually the first phone brand
to put out a foldable phone, meaning a foldable
OLED screen, was not Samsung,
or Huawei. It was a Chinese brand
named Royole, I tested the very first phone,
the Royole FlexPai, and to be honest, the phone
was not that great. But Royole's back with
a second version; This is the
FlexPai 2. So this was officially launched virtually
in China about a week ago. I don't think it's even
on sale yet. I might be one of the very first reviewers
to get my hands on this, you know, not because I'm like better or anything, but
just because I'm closer to the company.

But yeah, I always get my hands
on these tech really early. So if you're interested
in following the latest, you might want to consider
subscribing to my channel. So we have the
phone right here. This hinge already feels much
better than the last one, but let's put this
to the side first. Let's see what else
is in this box. So we have a charging brick, a sim ejector tool
and some papers and a USB-C cable. That appears
to be it. So no case…
no nothing. Last year's version came with a slight little
leather cover, but not this year's. Anyway, let's get
to the main event. So you have a quad
camera system here, and you have, I believe this is
like a 7.8 inch screen.

Okay, let's do
the first fold. Oh, so it folds a lot more
flush than last year. Last year's version,
when you fold it, there was actually still a little bit
like a half an inch of a gap: this year, you see it folds pretty flush,
compared to the Galaxy Fold 2. So this screen is
clearly plastic, it does not have that ultra thin glass technology
that's used in the Galaxy Z Fold2.

So this is called water OS
version 2. Alright, that was
a quick setup! Seems pretty intuitive
so far. So this is one use case from the
first FlexPai that's carried over; when you flip over the phone, you
can have a screen on the other side. So you can have two apps
running separately. So for example, you can have your Instagram
on this app and WhatsApp on this app. So that means you can
chat with your friend, and check your IG, you know, back and forth
without needing to actually close the app. So anyway, let me set up my information,
see if I can load Google on there. I'm not sure if we can
and then I'll be back. Alright guys,
I'm back. So, I took the Royole FlexPai 2
out with me for an afternoon, played around with
it nonstop.

And I have pretty good impressions
of this device already. So first things first; let's just
get this out of the way: This is not better than
the Galaxy Fold 2, and I think it would have been
almost damn near miracle, if Royole had made this better
than the Galaxy Fold 2. You know, Royole, they are a Chinese company
that they're relatively new to smartphones. The FlexPai; the first one was actually
their very first smartphone. This is just a second
attempt. Instead, they are a company that
specializes in making display panels, for many other different
businesses like, you know, if you go to mall in China, you see a curved display
that wraps around a wall; that might be from Royole, or on a bus, stuff
like that.

So this is only the second
attempt at a phone, and you can't really expect a relatively small
company, at least compared to Samsung, to be able to make a thing that
beats the Galaxy Fold 2 which, let's be honest here; this is
the phone of the year. Let's over specs
anyway. So this thing sells
for 1500 US dollars. That's just the conversion because it's
not gonna go on sale in the US for sure; It's about 9998 Chinese Yuan, so
that comes out about $1,500. So this thing runs on
a Snapdragon 865, this display on the front, it's a 5.5 inch
display with a 16:9 aspect ratio. Now, around the back, it's a 5.4 inch
display with a 16:10 aspect ratio.

But of course, this
is one panel. When you unfold the device, it becomes
a 7.8 inch display, a resolution of 1440p. Now, this hinge is really nice;
it's really well built, and as I already mentioned during the
unboxing, it actually folds more flush, really similar to the Huawei Mate XS's
hinge; the design is very similar. So this is a huge improvement
over the first FlexPai's hinge, which left a pretty wide
gap like that much, and the back of the hinge was
covered in cloth, in fabric.

It looked pretty kind of
homemade to be honest. Now, this hinge
looks a lot better. Now you have four
cameras right here; at the top you have a 16MP
ultra wide angle camera, the second camera is an 8MP telephoto
lens that can do 3X lossless zoom, and right here, the main camera; this is
a 64MP main camera with an F1.9 aperture, and down here is a 32MP portrait
lens for taking selfies.

Now I can't say I've tested the cameras
heavily, but I've tested it quite a bit, I've been outside for like 40 minutes
taking a lot of pictures, and the main camera; it's okay,
the 3X camera is also okay, the ultra wide angle camera;
not that great. There's like a major colour shift
in terms of color temperature, when you switch from the main camera and the
wide angle camera and the portrait lens. I don't even know what the hell
it does, to be honest. But let's get to the most
exciting part the phone; the fact that this is a pocketable device
that doubles as a smartphone, but if you want you can have it,
work as a tablet too.

And while we're already here, we
might as well do a speaker test. So, you get stereo speakers
on this phone, you have a speaker grill
down here and up top. So we have 60%…
max volume, 50%… So, speaker sounds pretty
good; stereo speaker, and this display panel
looks pretty good. Now, for those of you who've used
a Galaxy Z Flip or a Fold 2, you may know that this
inside foldable screen, has seen a major improvement from the
first Fold in that, it feels more like glass, it doesn't feel as soft and mushy,
like the first Galaxy Fold's panel. Unfortunately, Royole's screen
technology isn't there, meaning if you touch the foldable
screen of the Royole FlexPai 2, it feels softer, a little bit mushier than
the ultra thin glass that's used here. Now to be fair, this is
still kind of plastic, it is just mixed with a little bit of glass
to make it feel a little bit harder, But it definitely feels a little bit
more durable than the screen, and this is one of my major concerns
about using this phone.

Just like the Huawei Mate X,
the screen is always exposed. So that means if you drop this phone,
it's probably a goner, if you accidentally clang
this phone on a table, when you're taking it in
and out of your pocket, it's probably
a goner. So, durability is probably
a concern. Now, as I demonstrated
during the hands on, this UI allows you to open two apps,
basically separately, one on the front screen run
and one on the back screen. So, let's say on the front
screen on, Instagram. Now when I flip the phone around,
the screen automatically lights up, it can tell which side
is the right side up. I can open, say, the photo album right here.

And it
remains open, so now I have the full album right here. If I flip back around, I have
Instagram right here. And I really like that, when
you're watching Instagram, you can unfold the device and
it goes into this full screen view. I just think Instagram Stories
look so good on a large screen. Now the question a lot you guys
are surely wondering is, "Can this one run
Google Apps?" Unfortunately: No,
at least not so far.

So, I've already installed all
the site loading Google methods, like I downloaded an
APK from APK mirror, and I downloaded this really popular
Chinese app to install Google Apps, and it just cannot get Google
frameworks running. I think what happened was Royole
did not pay the licensing fee, so it does not have the Google
core mobile services in there, which is basically the same problem
that's happening to Huawei, except the difference is: Huawei
does not have access to it, not because they didn't pay, but
because Donald Trump blocked it, whereas Royole probably just did
not pay Google for those rights. So that means you cannot run
main core Google Apps on this, like YouTube, Google pay,
Google Drive… stuff like that. But Google Chrome still works
on this, as you can see, and you can watch YouTube
on Google Chrome, and Google Maps actually
work on this phone too. Now, let's check out
the settings panel. So the first thing you see
up top is edge screen. So I've turned it off already,
but by default it's on. When you turn it on, it basically has this little
pulldown menu from the side, you know, same same logic as the
Galaxy edge phones, meaning you pull from the side and it's
a menu that you trigger, from the side.

You have a shortcut here
to launch the camera, and shortcuts to launch Alipay and
WeChat… other Chinese apps. The good news is you can customize this menu
so you can put other apps on here too. Like you can have Instagram
on here if you want. Now, one cool shortcut trick is… this
space underneath the camera module, there's actually a touch
sensitive panel right here, and you can trigger actions
like, for example, let's say you have Chrome
open right here, if you double tap, it jumps
into a split screen mode. So now you can open something like…
I can open a calculator, you can double tap again, and you
can now open a third app, and you can resize
the windows too. So, multitasking, so far
seems pretty intuitive. I've not encountered
many bugs. Now overall in-hand feel,
it's pretty nice, although this phone is a little bit heavy,
and is also a little bit wide. So it's kind of awkward to hold
for long periods of time, because, you know, narrow
phones are easy to grip.

So this is not like the most
comfortable Fold to grip. The overall construction
does feel premium, although I am worried about the
durability of the screen. So that's about it for this kind of early
first look at the Royole FlexPai 2. I like the
hardware. Unfortunately, the lack of support for Google
Apps is going to be a major issue for me, and probably most
of you watching this, but to be honest, this phone's
not gonna sell outside of China, it's not meant for global audience;
this is meant for people within China, and you know, like it is what it is, I mean, the
Galaxy Fold 2 is the better phone for sure. If you can pay $1500 for this, you might as well
pay a little bit more and get the Fold 2.

But you know, if you want to
support a Chinese brand, if you want to support
a smaller brand, or if you have the money to buy multiple
phones, if you're a collector, this might be worth
looking at. So this is the Royole
FlexPai 2, I'm going to be testing a little bit more
and be back with a more full review, with more photo samples and opinions
on the camera and overall UI: all that. So that's it
for now. Once again, if you're interested
in keeping up to date, with the latest tech and gadgets out
of China or out of Japan and Korea, please subscribe
to my channel, or follow me on Instagram
at bensgadgetreviews. Thanks for
watching..

As found on YouTube