Apple Developing Foldable iPhone For 2023 – Report

Apple is reportedly developing a device that would be a major departure from its traditional slab sided iPhone.

A top Apple watcher, namely TFI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, has been widely reported in the media as predicting that Apple will likely launch a foldable iPhone in 2023.

This is not the first time that a folding iPhone has been predicted.

Back in February 2020 Apple was granted a patent for a foldable device with a unique hinge mechanism, that triggered speculation the iPad maker was developing a folding iPhone handset.

Folding iPhone?

The US Patent and Trademark Office had in February 2020 granted and published Apple’s take on the folding smartphone.

That patent revealed it used a hinge that rather a folding screen per say. Indeed, Apple’s hinge mechanism would ensure adequate separation between the first and second portions of the display.

Essentially, when the device is unfolded, movable flaps would extend to cover the gap, and then retract when the device is folded back up.

Now this week analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has added to the speculation that Apple will offer a rival to folding devices such as Samsung Galaxy Fold, Huawei’s Mate X, or Motorola’s foldable Razr handset.

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Ming-Chi Kuo was quoted by CNBC as saying that based on an industry survey, he believes the foldable iPhone will reach 15 million to 20 million units in 2023.

5G followup

It is thought the folding iPhone will likely have an 8-inch foldable OLED display, according to Kuo. This essentially means it might work like an iPhone that can open up to a tablet with a screen slightly larger than the 7.9-inch display on an iPad mini.

The foldable model is now a “must-have” for major smartphone brands, Kuo reportedly said in a note to clients.

“After 5G, the foldable smartphone is the next innovative selling point of high-end models,” he wrote.

Kuo added Apple is poised to lead the foldable device trend, which he said “will blur the product segmentations between smartphones, tablets, and laptops.”

An Apple spokesperson was not immediately available to comment on Kuo’s note, CNBC reported.

Tom Jowitt

Tom Jowitt is a leading British tech freelancer and long standing contributor to Silicon UK. He is also a bit of a Lord of the Rings nut...

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