The hinge on the Motorola RAZR may not be as sturdy as its screen if reports about a test conducted by CNET are to be believed. The company recently published a YouTube video showing the device being first unboxed. Then the handset was put through SquareTrade's FoldBot, hoping to push the gadget to at least 100,000 folds.
The expectation was that the display might give out first but at around 27,000 folds, the hinge stopped folding completely. By that count, the hinge would last for around a year at 73 folds per day.
By comparison, Samsung's Galaxy Fold lasted around 120,000 folds in a similar test conducted in October. While Motorola hasn't explicitly given a number of folds that its RAZR should survive, Samsung's phone fell well short of its marketed limit. The OEM had claimed it could surpass 200,000 folds over its lifespan.
The test here isn't real-world and probably shouldn't be treated as such
It's worth noting this test cycle is not necessarily the most scientific test that could have been performed. To begin with, by the math, 27,000 cycles over the 4 hour test period can be equated to around 113 cycles per minute. That's approximately 2 open-close cycles per second.
While smartphone users are undoubtedly addicted to checking their devices often, those numbers are well beyond most users' habits. More importantly, that rate of opening and closing a foldable smartphone puts significant stress on all of the parts involved. That's primarily because heat builds up from such rapid movement in both the screen and the hinge.
One study conducted back in 2018 puts the number of times a user checks their phone per day at up to 160 times. But those figures apply to what happens over the course of an entire day rather than within just a few minutes. It's also plausible that the 2.7-inch external display on the Motorola RAZR could reduce that number. Or at least that may be the case in terms of how often users are going through the motion of opening up the device completely.
Those two factors likely change things considerably. It is far less likely the average user will heat up the hinge or display enough to cause a similar failure to what's shown in the test.
Motorola RAZR recovered where Samsung's Fold failed
There is at least one other big discrepancy between the test conducted last year on Samsung's Galaxy Fold and that of the Motorola RAZR. Namely, when Samsung's flagship folder failed, its screen stopped functioning in addition to hinge problems. The display on the Motorola RAZR does not appear to have stopped working.
What's more, with some coaxing, the hinge on the Motorola RAZR reportedly began working again too. Samsung's handset did not, perhaps unsurprisingly since the device initially launched with severe issues as well. The preliminary result of the test is arguably inconclusive, as a result.
Despite the fact that Motorola RAZR failed its fold test earlier on, it could be the case that its hinge and screen ultimately hold up at least as well as Samsung's.