Apple is working on a foldable iPhone, which the company plans to launch in the next two years. The company is already working with “suppliers on a foldable iPhone” that could hit the market as early as 2020, Bank of America Merrill Lynch analyst Wamsi Mohan wrote to investors. According to CNBC, which obtained a copy of the research note, Mohan claims are based on the interactions he had with Asian supply-chain partners.
“We expect the iPhones this fall to be largely unchanged for the OLED versions although size changes have proved to be a catalyst in the past,” wrote Mohan. “Our checks also suggest that Apple is working with suppliers on a foldable phone (that potentially could double up as a tablet) for launch in 2020.”
This isn’t the first time we’re hearing that Apple has plans to launch a foldable iPhone on the market. South Korea’s The Investor reported a similar claim back in October. The publication reported that Apple was working closely with LG Display on a foldable iPhone. Foldable smartphones have been in development for a while now. However, not a single tech company has been able to launch a bendable smartphone that could double as a tablet. Samsung and LG are the major players when it comes to producing flexible OLED displays.
Samsung will be one of the first smartphone companies in the world to launch a foldable smartphone. DJ Koh, Samsung’s mobile chief, has already confirmed that the South Korean giant is working on a foldable smartphone. However, the company isn’t ready to reveal the launch date just yet. The device is believed to be called the Galaxy X and it features a 7.3-inch OLED screen that can be opened to form a tablet. Huawei, the world’s third-largest smartphone company, is also said to be developing a foldable smartphone.
Based on several patents filed by Apple, a foldable iPhone opens and closes like a book. Patents are by means no confirmation that Apple would like to mass produce the device. Also, Apple is famous for being secretive about its products that are yet to launch. So, it is even hard to claim how the iPhone will look like in 2020. But we do know that the successor to the iPhone X is expected to land sometime later this year and will feature an OLED display.