Foldable Apple iPhone rumours date back as far as 2018, when the bendy iPhone was slated for a 2020 release. Then 2020 came (along with a pandemic) and we never saw the device, but we did see a patent to suggest the Cupertino giant was at least exploring the idea of a folding iPhone. Early last year, prototypes of the foldable Apple smartphone were reported, and a few months later, a respected tipster told us an 8-inch iPhone that folds is coming in 2023.
Now, Display Supply Chain Consultants has published a report that sort of bursts the foldable iPhone bubble. As part of the US firm's broader report focusing on the growth of foldable smartphone shipments for companies such as Samsung, TCL and Xiaomi, the company (which is dedicated to flat panel display industry insight) has supplied new details (opens in new tab) on Apple’s work on a foldable iPhone – or lack thereof.
According to DSCC analyst Ross Young, we should delay our expectations on Apple entering the foldable smartphone market by two years, to 2025. Young writes that Apple, "does not appear to be in a hurry to enter the foldable smartphone market, and it may even take longer than that".
But it's not all bad news: although Tim Cook's behemoth may have put its foldable iPhone on hold, DSCC says the company is in discussions with suppliers over the idea of bigger "foldable notebooks".
While a product is still four or five years away, Apple's interest apparently lies in a 20-inch foldable of some sort. The report reads: "On the other hand, we are now showing Apple in our roadmap for foldable notebooks. We hear there is interest at the largest size yet, around 20-inch.
"This size could create a new category for Apple and would result in a true dual use product, a notebook with a full-size keyboard when folded and for use as a monitor when not folded and used with an external keyboard. It may also allow for UHD/4K resolution or even higher at that size. The time frame is likely later than 2025 though, it could be 2026 or 2027."
Many of Apple's Android competitors (most notably Samsung, with the Galaxy Z Fold 3 and Flip 3) have plunged headfirst into the foldable phone market – and a more affordable option from Google called the 'Pixel Notepad' has been mentioned more recently. Apple, meanwhile, has so far shied away from the limelight when it comes to smartphones that fold.
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