Foldable phones haven’t gone much further than the concept stage at this point, but you can bet Apple will be there when they do arrive.
That could happen for iPhone as soon as 2020, according to a new analyst report from Bank of America Merrill Lynch. Such a form factor would give your iPhone the potential to transform into an iPad.
“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,” analyst Wamshi Mohan wrote (h/t CNBC). His report is based on recent meetings with Apple suppliers in Asia.
It’s hardly confirmation, but it’s yet another sign that Apple will be looking to shake things up with a move away from purely iterative annual iPhone releases. Late last year, the company was awarded a patent for a device with “a flexible display” and the ability to be folded.
Other companies are looking into the folding display business as well — as evidenced in patents held by Microsoft and Samsung — but the technology itself has been slow to arrive. Samsung has offered up concepts, but the most recent forecast suggests they won’t surface until 2019 at the earliest.
Of course, none of this answers the question of whether or not a phone with a folding display is something that consumers even want.