This is the age of foldable phones, and the flip form factor seems to be the more popular of the two mainstream types. If you own one, how do you use it? For example, do you leave your Flip phone open or closed when not in use?
Perhaps before you made the purchase, you imagined that using a foldable flip phone would mean you opening and closing it often – close it when dropping it on your desk and open it to use it again. I imagine that is the image that many people have in their heads. But real life usage will likely require you to adjust.
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What you expected vs real life experience
I suspect that after you finally get a foldable flip phone, it quickly dawns on you that real life usage is different from the preconceived notions you might have had in your head. For example, you might find out after a few days that it is tedious having to open and close a flip phone so often, and then you begin to leave it open, like a regular smartphone, more often when you drop it on your desk or bedside table.
This will likely be true for you if you are very active on social media or you have lots of messages (email, SMS, whatsapp, Telegram, tec) to respond to. Closing your flip phone when putting it down, only to pick it up and open it again a few minutes or moments later, is not exactly practical or optimum. So, you leave your flip phone open more often than not.
When do you close your flip phone?
Without doubt, you will likely close your flip when you need to be on the move, so you can safely keep it in your pocket or bag. Even if you will hold it in your hand, unless you are actively using it, you will likely keep it closed when on the move. Keeping it closed in those situations will protect the inner (main) display from potential damage.
Another scenario in which you might keep it closed is when at work, especially if your work does not require you to use your smartphone. Of course, if you have your workspace to yourself, you can leave your foldable flip phone open on your desk just like any other phone (I address why in the last section of this article).
Besides these scenarios, it is likely that you will have your flip phone open more often than closed. Is it not interesting that we buy foldable phones only to use them in open (regular phone) more than otherwise. The folding factor is to aid mobility. Whether you are using a horizontal, book-style foldable or a vertical, flip foldable, the primary benefit of the ability to fold is that it provides the device a compact form factor for safekeeping when on the move.
Should you keep your Flip phone open or closed when storing it?
If you are going to not use your flip phone for a long period and want to store it away, it is recommended that you store it away in open mode – the same mode it came with in the sales box. There is a reason why foldable flip phones come open in the box. Apparently, the hinge and crease last longer in that mode.
So, when storing it away for keeps, leave your foldable flip open. As a matter of fact, except for scenarios in which the main display would be at risk of damage from liquids and physical objects, leave your flip phone open. It will keep better that way.
Close or fold it when you need to hit the road, or when you are in an environment where there is a high risk of some damage happening to the main display. You don’t want to spend premium cash on one of the best flip phones money can buy and then end up with avoidable damage.
Open or closed: Understanding the issues
There are a number of issues behind the question of whether to keep your flip phone open or closed. As you will find out, what you need to do is find a balance.
The main display – the one that folds – is the most fragile part of a foldable device – whether it is the bigger book or smaller flip form factor. That is the part you want to protect the most at all times.
Fact 1: The folding screen wears out faster, the more you close a foldable device. Don’t fret; I’m not trying to scare you. These phones have been tested and will survive thousands of closing and opening movements. But it is good that you know that the closed position puts some strain on the folding screen. So, leaving your flip phone open more often, especially when you are using it quite frequently, helps to minimise that wear and tear.
Fact 2: Closing your foldable flip phone also protects the flexible display from damage (from liquids and solids objects). Imagine having left your flip phone open on the table at an evening out and someone accidentally spills a drink on it. Tears. Hot tears. Please close it in such situations.
If there are drinks and food, or any other activity, on the table, keep your flip closed if you will be dropping it on the table. Preferably, keep it in your pocket. It is compact after all. However, if you need to show off with it by keeping it on the table, keep it closed.
If you won’t be using it often when out like that, it should be closed anyway.