Foldable iPhone Could Be a Reality in 2020, Believes Analyst

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Bank of America Merrill Lynch analysts believe that Apple could end up launching a radically designed iPhone with a foldable display within the next two years. Analyst Wamsi Mohan believes that Apple is working with its suppliers towards the launch of a foldable iPhone in 2020. 

The foldable iPhone could potentially double as a tablet. The report is based on various Apple suppliers that Wamsi met in Asia.

“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,” analyst Wamsi Mohan wrote in a note to clients Friday. “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.”

Samsung is currently the leader in foldable display technology, and we have heard for years that the company is on the verge of launching a smartphone with foldable display. Yet, we have not seen anything from the company so far in this regard. There are chances that the Korean company would end up launching a foldable smartphone later this year after affirmation of a foldable smartphone being in the work from a high-level company executive.

Our Take

Its unclear how OEMs will take advantage of foldable displays in smartphones. While it does sound cool that your smartphone can convert into a tablet thanks to its foldable display, its unclear if the technology is at that level or not. Foldable smartphones come with their own set of risks and the display quality of the panel itself is unlikely to match the very best of what OLED and even LCD panels offer right now. Nonetheless, it will be interesting to see how the technology develops over time and how various companies use it in their devices.

As for Apple, I don’t really expect the company to release a foldable smartphone in 2020. If anything, an iPhone with a foldable display is still a few years away from being turned into a reality.

[Via CNBC]