Folding iPhone could be 2 years away


Folding iPhone is here! Too bad there's only one.
This one-off folding iPhone mod could be a glimpse of the future.
Photo: KJMX

Apple may have decided that 2026 is the right year to launch a folding iPhone.

Cupertino has been tinkering with prototype handsets with foldable displays for a long time. An analyst predicted Thursday that the company will finally have something to offer in a couple of years.

No Folding iPhone before 2026

Samsung is already hard at work on its sixth-generation Galaxy Fold, though foldable handsets are still a niche product. The market-analysis firm IDC says only about 18.1 million devices in the category shipped globally in 2023. Apple is nevertheless exploring the possibility, and has been since 2018.

But its efforts won’t see a tangible product for years to come. “Apple is predicted to release a 7-8 inch foldable iPhone in 2026,” said Kang Min-soo, a senior analyst with Omdia, according to the Korean-language site The Elec (machine translation).

Apple is aware of your concerns

It’s not hard to find critics of current foldable devices. The products are thick, expensive and the flexible screens develop creases over time.

“Foldables were a hard sell in 2023, as many vendors struggled to move significant inventory,” said Anthony Scarsella, an IDC analyst. “The market has not fully embraced the form factor. High prices and longevity remain a challenge to both consumers and vendors.”

This has not escaped Apple’s attention. Details of folding iPhone prototypes that leaked out recently show the company is striving to make a device as slim as current iOS handsets. And it wants a foldable screen without a visible crease.

Despite the 2026 prediction, there’ll be no folding iPhone until it meets the company’s design goals, according to information leaking out of Apple.

Work on a MacBook with a 20-inch folding screen is also going on in Cupertino, according to an earlier report.


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