While there’s talk that the iPhone 14 range will include big design changes, Apple likely has even bigger changes planned after that, with a foldable phone which we’re referring to as the iPhone Fold reportedly in the works.
But while reports had suggested this could land in 2023 to challenge the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5, it’s now apparently been delayed until at least 2025.
That’s according to a report published by Display Supply Chain Consultants – a company run by Ross Young, who has an excellent track record for information on unreleased phones.
According to the report, Apple "does not appear to be in a hurry to enter the foldable smartphone market, and it may even take longer than ." So we could be waiting years for an iPhone Fold, potentially leaving the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold range with little in the way of competition.
That said, Apple does appear serious about foldables, with the same report suggesting the company also has a foldable MacBook planned, but that’s also reportedly years away.
So as usual Apple is taking its time, and not jumping on board with a technology just because it’s new and trendy. This will probably allow it to launch a highly polished iPhone Fold on day one, unlike Samsung, which had teething issue with its foldables, and is arguably still perfecting them now.
Analysis: a potentially short-lived product
While Apple probably will launch a foldable iPhone, this might not be a product category that the company continues year after year for a long time as it has with conventional iPhones.
That’s because Ming-Chi Kuo (a respected analyst with a good track record for Apple information) believes that the company will look to replace the iPhone with augmented reality devices like the Apple Glasses within ten years.
He made this claim in late 2021, so if his prediction is right then conventional Apple smartphones might be a thing of the past by 2031, and if the iPhone Fold doesn’t launch until 2025 or later, then it might only last a handful of generations.
Then again, predictions that far ahead are always going to be iffy, and even if AR glasses become Apple’s main product, that doesn’t necessarily mean there won’t still be a market for smartphones too.
- Here's everything we know about the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4
Via Apple Insider
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James is a freelance phones, tablets and wearables writer and sub-editor at TechRadar. He has a love for everything ‘smart’, from watches to lights, and can often be found arguing with AI assistants or drowning in the latest apps. James also contributes to 3G.co.uk, 4G.co.uk and 5G.co.uk and has written for T3, Digital Camera World, Clarity Media and others, with work on the web, in print and on TV.