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Apple may launch foldable device in 2026, but will it be an iPhone or an iPad?

Apple’s highly anticipated venture into the realm of foldable devices may materialise sooner than later, with speculations suggesting a potential launch in 2026. Despite the prolonged discourse surrounding the prospect of a foldable iPhone, or iPad, concrete details have remained elusive, with only patent sketches offering glimpses into Apple’s developments in this arena. Recent insights from Korean website The Elec, as reported by MacRumors, indicate that consumers can anticipate Apple’s inaugural foldable device to debut in either 2026 or possibly extend to 2027. The reported size of the foldable display is expected to range between 7 to 8 inches, placing it in direct competition with the 7.6-inch Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5.

Given the substantial dimensions, industry experts anticipate a book-style design for this foldable device, akin to Samsung’s Galaxy Z Fold series, rather than adopting the flip phone design observed in the smaller Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5.

Foldable iPhone or Foldable iPad?

An intriguing aspect of this revelation is the uncertainty surrounding whether this device will manifest as a foldable iPhone or a foldable iPad. The Elec raises the possibility that it might serve as a replacement for the iPad mini line, although Apple is concurrently rumoured to be developing an iPad mini featuring an OLED screen.

Not sure which
mobile to buy?

This presents a conundrum as to whether Apple would introduce an OLED-equipped iPad mini, anticipated around 2025 or later, followed closely by a foldable iPad. The Elec suggests that Apple is grappling with this decision, with specifications yet to be finalised, indicating an early stage in the development process.

Display Suppliers and Potential Implications

The report mentions that both Samsung Display and LG Display have been supplying Apple with 7-inch and 8-inch screen samples since the previous year. Samsung Display is expected to be the primary display supplier, leveraging its expertise gained from manufacturing screens for the Galaxy Z Fold and Galaxy Z Flip product lines.

Despite these developments, it is crucial to approach this information cautiously. The details provided appear to be in a nascent stage, with room for alterations. While the prospect of Apple releasing a foldable device in 2026 or 2027 is not to be dismissed, it remains subject to further developments and potential modifications in the coming years.

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