When it comes to flip-style foldables, one trait quickly separated itself from the pack: the cover screen. Early models of these flippable devices limited users to just a single strip, which allowed you to see the time and a few controls, but that was largely it. Fast forward to 2023, and things are quite different, with multiple foldable devices offering much more fully-functioning cover screens. The Oppo Find N3 Flip represents the middle ground between these two eras, and it comes in a nice little package with a very respectable camera to boot.
The primary attraction of a flip phone is a normal-sized phone that folds in half for easy pocketability. The cover screen enables extra functionality without opening the phone in the first place, which saves battery and is convenient. The cover screen on the Oppo Find N3 Flip is just the right size to display plenty of apps, but Oppo has limited its functionality. As for the rest of the phone, it’s pretty impressive. So, let’s get right to it and see if this device is worthy of a place on our list of the best foldable phones.
- Great camera for a foldable
- Solid battery life
- Powerful processor
- Almost invisible crease
Price and availability
Despite a global launch on October 19, 2023, the pricing and availability of the Oppo Find N3 Flip still isn’t exactly clear. We can take a stab at the retail cost, though, with the company revealing a Singaporean price of S$1,499. That works out at just under $1,100, or just over £900, so if the device does become available in the U.S.A. and Europe, we expect it to launch at around that amount.
I’ve been using an Oppo Find N3 Flip sample, provided by Oppo on T-Mobile’s network in the Chicagoland area for three weeks, and this is our full review. By the way, if you want to know exactly how we review smartphones here at Pocket Tactics before we get into it, you can see our guide to how we test.
The Oppo Find N3 Flip is the next generation of Oppo foldable, with the Find N2 debuting late last year. This souped-up version brings a similar design and cover screen but with upgraded cameras and a newer processor. Oppo utilizes the Mediatek Dimensity 9200 chipset in this device. It’s the best processor Mediatek has made thus far, delivering a surprising amount of power.
This device comes in 256GB and 512GB configurations with 12GB of RAM. It also has a 4,3000 mAh battery with a respectable battery life and 44W wired charging. Those are the big numbers, but the more interesting details lie in the software features.
Color OS is not new these days, and you can find much of the same software on any Oppo or OnePlus phone. That includes the incredibly easy way to make folders. Simply pinch in with two fingers and place checkmarks in all the apps you want to combine into a folder. It’s my favorite way to group apps, and my workflow centers around this feature, so this is important to me. I also like the ability to change the shape of the icons, which gives your phone a bit of flair.
One of my favorite software tweaks is the ability to enlarge folders. Rather than the typical single icon groupings, you can expand them to 2×2 size. Inside, it displays the first nine icons in the folder. Tap on any of those icons to open the app, or swipe for different pages. It makes the icons more compact and accessible, and I’m a big fan of this fresh feature.
While the cover screen is customizable, it’s not quite as impressive as some of the alternatives. Unlike the Motorola Razr Plus or the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5, where you can run almost anything you want on the cover screen, Oppo has curated the functionality to a limited number of apps. Still, those it does include tend to work well.
The fact that Oppo curates the app experience and limits everything else isn’t ideal, but I understand where the company is coming from. Motorola and Samsung let you do anything you want, but that can be slightly overwhelming for some. By limiting the apps, Oppo creates a more beginner-friendly experience for those new to flippable and foldable phones. Whether you find that a positive or a negative depends on your needs and experience.
Before rounding out the features section, there are a couple of missing things worth mentioning. The first is wireless charging, which should be a must in a modern smartphone. The second is more concerning. This device doesn’t have an IP rating for waterproofing. Compare this to the Samsung Flip 5’s stellar X8 IP waterproof rating and even the Motorola Razr 40’s middling IP52 rating, and it’s quite disappointing to not have that reassurance should you run into an aquatic mishap.
Right off the bat, this is one of the better camera setups on a flip-style foldable. However, it might not be the most consistent. Even still, this camera is capable of good and even great photos, more often than not. Oppo calls the camera housing a Cosmos Ring, surrounded by a Starlight Track. In layman’s terms, it’s a camera bump about the size of a half dollar, with ridges that run around the outside.
There are three lenses inside the Cosmos Ring: a 50MP main camera, a 48MP ultrawide camera, and a 32MP 2x optical telephoto lens. There’s also very prominent Hasselblad branding on the camera housing, indicating that the camera company is continuing its long partnership with BBK, Oppo’s parent company. Like the OnePlus 11, the telephoto is a portrait camera. It’s mostly there to help create the bokeh effect behind a subject in a portrait shot rather than function as a zoom lens. If you look closely, you’ll notice that this camera setup is virtually identical to the OnePlus 11.
As is typical for most cameras in this day and age, shots that you capture during the day are bright and color-accurate. The color consistency between camera lenses is clear and coherent, so you can take photos using any of the three sensors and get the colors you’re looking for with a lot of detail. The selfie camera is also better than you might think, even if one of the benefits of a flip-style foldable is the option to use the primary camera for your selfies while using the cover screen to frame your shot.
As for video, it’s nicely stabilized when using the main camera, but the selfie camera has no stabilization. Again, using the phone closed to shoot video works very well, but be aware that recording with the primary sensor while using the cover screen sees a limit of 1080p. All in all, it’s better to forget that the selfie camera exists and use the main sensors more often than not.
At night, the primary sensor is the only one you want to use. That goes for video as well, and I suggest you avoid moving around too much or walking at a pace when shooting in darkness with a subject in the frame. Otherwise, you get a lot of judder and bounce from your footfalls. Moving subjects can also be difficult to capture, though not impossible.
Overall, this is one of the better camera setups I’ve experienced on a flip-style foldable, but the results can be a mixed bag. I would often snap a photo, and it would come out pretty bad, but a similar photo taken later under similar circumstances would turn out great without any apparent reason. Put simply, if you’re in a situation where you want to capture the memory, take a few shots. There’s a strong chance that one of them will turn out great, day or night.
The Oppo Find N3 Flip’s hinge is fantastic and reduces the crease to the point it’s almost invisible. It’s not as stiff as the one in the Galaxy Z Flip 5, nor even the Moto Razr Plus, flopping fully open at around the 135-degree mark.
On the other side, this device stands open at about 25 degrees, but the hinge is not as tight as I might like. It feels much like the Razr Plus in that you almost have to open it slightly past where you want it, whereas the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 stops wherever you desire.
The body, front, and back are made of glass and come in Sleek Black, Cream Gold, and Misty Pink colorways. It looks great, but it’s very slippery, managing to quickly slide off any surface you set it down on. For this reason, it’s worth picking up a case when they’re available.
The inner screen of the Oppo Find N3 Flip presents a 6.8-in LTPO AMOLED with 1,600 nits of peak brightness, so it’s very bright and readable in full daylight. It’s a beautiful display overall, capable of dimming to low levels for more comfortable nighttime reading or gaming. Speaking of dimming, auto brightness is finicky, to put it politely, so you’re better off turning it off and relying on manual brightness adjustments.
Of course, the inside screen of the flip phone is only half the story. The other half is the cover screen, another place where you can have some fun. Oppo includes a pack of cute animated animals such as a rabbit, duck, koala bear, and others, all of which can find a home on the display. Oppo calls these animals “interactive”. In reality, they just cycle through a series of animations when you tap the screen.
Other cover screen wallpapers include some beautiful animations and a weather screen that reflects current conditions. You can customize each of these with different widgets that show you the battery level or launch features like the flashlight, camera, timer, or voice recorder. It feels intelligently designed, even if it isn’t quite as function-heavy as some of the other foldable or flippable phones on the market.
Still, the most remarkable thing about the cover screen is that it’s edge-to-edge. There is no bezel on the screen at all, which makes activities like watching TikTok especially satisfying, as the video just appears on the cover of the phone.
The battery on this Oppo device finds itself on the better side of decent. The 4,300 mAh battery can last all day and well into the next, as long as you adopt the cover screen into your workflow.
The cover screen is smaller and takes less energy to power, so if there’s a task you need to perform and you can do it reasonably on the cover screen, do that for the sake of your battery. If you continue using the phone open most of the time, you can make it to the end of the day, but only just.
Fortunately, when you do run out of battery, this handset is quick to charge. 44W charging might not sound blockbuster, but you can rely on it to get you back up to 50% in just under half an hour, provided you’re using the official equipment.
The Oppo Find N3 comes with a Mediatek Dimensity 9200 chipset, which is Mediatek’s flagship processor (though it’s reasonable to expect a new generation in the not-too-distant future). In saying that, this processor has some punch, scoring 1,319/3,554 single/multi-core score in Geekbench 6, placing it in the neighborhood of the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 processor for performance.
What that means in terms of gaming is that the phone can easily play the likes of Genshin Impact for over 30 minutes on medium settings with no dropped frames or stutters. Other games like Asphalt 9 and Call of Duty: Mobile are equally smooth. In short, this phone can keep up with some pretty intense gaming, let alone any other task you throw at it.
Should I buy the Oppo Find N3 Flip?
Oppo hasn’t yet announced official pricing or availability for this phone outside of China and India, so it’s hard to judge whether someone should buy it. If you’re in the market for a foldable and enjoy smartphone photography, then this is a decent option. However, the Dimensity 9200 chipset in the phone is about on par with last year’s Snapdragon processor, so if you’re looking for best-in-class gaming performance, this might be a tougher sell.
Assuming this phone lands somewhere in the neighborhood of $1000 US, this isn’t a bad pickup. Still, it’s worth pointing out that both the Moto RAZR + and the Samsung Galaxy Flip 5 are in that price range and have better cover displays, though inferior cameras under most circumstances. If Oppo asks for more than those manufacturers, I’d go with one of the other options. At around $1000, this is a good deal.
If this Oppo Find N3 Flip review leaves you unconvinced, check out some of our suggestions for alternatives below.
Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5
If you can’t get behind the partial cover screen of the Oppo Find N3 Flip, there are two larger options. This first is the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5. This is Samsung’s fifth-generation flip-style foldable, and it shows in the ways that count. The outer display is larger than that of the Oppo Find N3 and comes with a lot of customizations and widgets, offering more freedom for the user than the Find N3 Flip.
Otherwise, the Flip 5 offers a comparable battery, a superior build, and similarly performing cameras, though, I would give the edge to the Oppo in this case. Samsung also has a lot more experience in building these devices, so in theory, it might be better at supporting damaged screens, which could be a difference maker.
Motorola Razr Plus
Motorola started the large cover screen trend with the Motorola Razr Plus, or the Moto Razr 40 Ultra, depending on where you’re reading this from. This cover screen is the most user-friendly of the bunch, featuring more options than the Samsung and Oppo devices.
Unfortunately, Motorola has a long history of bad cameras, and the Moto Razr Plus is no exception. You can capture decent photos with the camera set, but unless the lighting is perfect, decent is as good as you’re going to get. If the camera is important to you, you should probably go with the Oppo or the Samsung. If not, just about every other part of the Motorola Razr Plus stands out as superior.
The Oppo Find N3 Flip is a great compromise between the tiny cover screens of the past and the enormous ones we have now. The rest of the phone is on par with what you’ll get from other flip-style foldables in terms of build, durability, and inner screen. Where the phone stands out most is in the crease (or lack thereof) and the camera. All told this is a solid offering in the foldable space.