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Rumor mill: Samsung will reveal its next-gen folding phones on August 10 at the company's Unpacked event. We're not expecting to see too many changes this year, especially when it comes to design, but there are rumors that the company is making a minor if significant name change to both devices.
According to leaker SnoopyTech, Samsung will be dropping the 'Z' from the names of the Galaxy Z Fold 4 and Galaxy Z Flip 4, a change that will also apply to all future foldables in the series.
Samsung Electronics tries to get rid of the "Z" letter in their folding phone series. Starting with Flip/Fold 4, the letter won't be printed on the boxes anymore. That's because Russian military is using the letter.— SnoopyTech (@_snoopytech_) August 2, 2022
While the majority of consumers tend not to mention the Z part when talking about Galaxy Folds and Galaxy Flips, the reason behind Samsung's purported decision is the negative connotations behind the letter following Russia's invasion of Ukraine.
Hand-painted Z-shaped letters were spotted on Russian tanks and military trucks on the Ukrainian border days before the invasion took place in February, and it has been used as a symbol of support for Russia ever since. There are several theories about what it stands for, from Zapad (west), which is where the Russian troops were stationed, to Za pobedu ("for victory").
A Russian news presenter in April claimed that the Z was actually two number 7s on top of each other, one of them upside down and reversed, representing the 77 years since Victory Day—the end of World War II.
This clip also explains what the "Z" is supposed to symbolize: two number 7s stacked (one of them upside down), representing 77 years since Victory Day. So, to celebrate the ending of WWII Putin decided to start a WWZ. https://t.co/WOvki2nChj— Julia Davis (@JuliaDavisNews) April 19, 2022
It's still just a rumor that needs to be taken with a dose of salt, but it's a believable one, especially as Samsung already removed the Z from the Flip 3 and Fold 3 in Baltic nations such as Estonia, Lithuania, and Latvia in April. The company is also one of many that stopped doing business in Russia, having banned smartphone shipments to the country in March.
Back in May, Russian DOTA 2 player Ivan 'Pure' Moskalenko got his team disqualified from a tournament and had his contract terminated after displaying what appeared to be the Z symbol during a livestreamed match. He claimed it was an "accident" without apologizing.
Ког'а пытаешься весь интернет наебать что вышло случайно. -аль ты тварь намеренно все 'орисовывал. pic.twitter.com/JPpfqiS1GD— 'иктор 'олков (@KoTHunt) April 29, 2022
We'll find out if Samsung's next phones are called the Galaxy Z Fold/Flip 4 or they drop the Z in exactly one week from now. In the meantime, check out these official leaked renders of both devices, which do show the letter Z.