How to enable the Flex Mode panel on Galaxy Z Flip and Z Fold phones

So you are the proud owner of one of Samsung’s foldables. Look at you, you early adopter! Obviously, there are a few more ways to use your phone than a typical slate-style phone, and that’s probably why you bought one.

Flex Mode is one of those features. It’s basically just a term for when you use the phone’s main screen folded in half. It is most useful if you want to put the phone down and use it hands-free, e.g. for video calling, and some apps are optimized by default to take advantage of it.

Here’s how to use Flex Mode with the apps that support it natively — and also how to enable it for apps that don’t. I tested these steps on a Galaxy Z Fold 4 and Galaxy Z Flip 4 running One UI 4.1.1.

For apps that support Flex Mode

To enter Flex mode, make sure you have the orientation lock turned off (check for the lock icon in the notification/quick settings shade), then open an app and fold the phone screen in half like a laptop or makeup compact. If the app supports it, you’ll see the content move to the top screen and – usually – a set of controls will appear at the bottom. This varies by app; Also, not all apps that support Flex Mode on the Fold are supported on the Flip.

Here’s a list of apps that support Flex Mode by default on the Fold 4:

  • Calculator
  • Calendar
  • Camera
  • Clock
  • Google Duo
  • Gallery
  • Internet
  • telephone
  • Samsung free
  • Samsung Health
  • Samsung TV Plus
  • Youtube
  • Zoom

Panel settings for Flex mode are available under Labs.

Here you can switch to the Flex mode panel for apps that don’t support it natively.

For other apps

You don’t need to do anything to use any of the above apps in Flex Mode. But if you’re using a Fold 3 or 4, or a Flip 3 or 4, you can follow a few extra steps to enable Flex Mode for almost any app on your phone. Here’s what you need to do:

  • Go to Settings > Advanced Features > Labs
  • Scroll to the bottom and tap Flex mode panel
  • Tap the switch next to the app you want to use with Flex Mode

The Galaxy Fold 4 and Flip 4 offer a touch panel option for apps that don’t natively support Flex Mode.
Photo by Allison Johnson/The Verge

Once you’ve done that, open the app, fold the phone in half, and you’ll see the content move to the top half of the screen, and a control panel will appear at the bottom with a series of icons. Here’s what they do:

  • Notifications – tap to pull down the notification panel
  • Screenshot
  • Brightness
  • Bind

Starting with the Fold 4 and Flip 4, you’ll see a fifth option: Touchpad. Tap this icon and you get a PC-like touchpad and a cursor that moves around the top half of the screen. The touchpad controls are exactly as you’d expect: pinch to zoom, use two fingers to scroll, and tap to click. It’s a smart way to take advantage of your phone’s unique ability to sit up all by itself.

Now step forward and bow.

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