Apple Testing Multiple Foldable iPhone Prototypes, But Has Concerns Over Display Technology and Market

Apple is experimenting with multiple foldable iPhone prototypes, according to leaker Dylandkt, but a foldable ‌iPhone‌ may not be coming in the near future because Apple still has concerns over foldable display technology and the market for foldable smartphones.

Foldable iPhone 2023 Feature Blue
In a tweet thread, ‌Dylandkt‌ said that Apple is working on a possible future device, but that foldable display technology is not advanced enough and there are still too many "compromises" to deal with.


Apple is also reportedly concerned about whether foldable smartphones will continue to be popular with consumers or will become obsolete in the coming years.

Before releasing a foldable ‌iPhone‌, Apple wants to be sure that a foldable design isn't a "regression from the current form factor of the ‌iPhone‌," which could indeed happen if there are issues with display longevity and quality because of the folding functionality. ‌Dylandkt‌'s comments suggest that Apple is continuing to take a wait and see approach to foldable smartphone technology, but some other rumors have indicated that Apple could release a foldable ‌iPhone‌ as soon as 2023.

Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said in May 2021 that Apple is developing a foldable ‌iPhone‌ with an 8-inch flexible OLED QHD+ display that's set to be released in 2023. Display analyst Ross Young in December said that Apple would not release a foldable ‌iPhone‌ until 2023 "at the earliest," with 2024 being a more likely target date. Bloomberg in early 2021 said that Apple had started "early work" on an ‌iPhone‌ with a foldable display, indicating that there are a few years of development left.

Foldable iPhone rumors have been circulating since 2016, and we've previously heard reports about various prototypes that Apple is testing. Samsung has allegedly provided foldable display samples to Apple for testing purposes, but development has not yet expanded beyond a display.

At least one of Apple's foldable ‌iPhone‌ prototypes is said to feature two separate display panels connected with a hinge, a departure from single-display designs that Samsung has introduced. Another has been described as a foldable ‌iPhone‌ with a clamshell design similar to the Galaxy Z Flip.

Samsung has been releasing foldable smartphones for years now, and other Android manufacturers have also embraced foldable technology. Smartphones with foldable displays continuing to face issues with durability and build quality, and they also have high price tags that far exceed the cost of standard smartphones.

Top Rated Comments

dantracht Avatar
10 months ago
Still need convincing on the whole folding thing.
Score: 39 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MisterK Avatar
10 months ago
Folding iPads make far more sense than folding iPhones. Folding an iPad would make it pocketable. The iPhone, on the other hand, is already pocketable and people look at it a couple hundred times a day. Unfolding there adds a LOT of friction.
Score: 25 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jayducharme Avatar
10 months ago
Apple always plays the long game. I'm not surprised they're taking their time. The foldables I've seen so far just don't add anything compelling. They're usually a lot thicker that a standard smartphone and have a shorter life span. I don't see that trade-off as worth it for a slightly larger screen (which in many cases isn't even properly optimized).
Score: 17 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ScottishDuck Avatar
10 months ago
I only ever see the Samsung folding phones on steep discounts so I’m assuming they’re not particularly popular.

I don’t see a point until the crease is eliminated.
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
tedley Avatar
10 months ago
Hello $2500 iPhone!
OK, $2499.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
djcerla Avatar
10 months ago
An iPhone I bought in 2010 is still in good use.

Apple does not make devices built to last a limited amount of time, so technology must improve A LOT before they enter the foldable arena.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Related Stories

iPhone 14 Hole Punch Feature

iPhone 15 Pro Rumored to Feature Under-Screen Face ID System From Samsung

Tuesday March 22, 2022 7:38 pm PDT by
Samsung Display is developing new under-panel camera technology that Apple plans to use to hide Face ID under the display on next year's tentatively named "iPhone 15 Pro" models, according to sources cited by Korean website The Elec. While rumors suggest that this year's "iPhone 14 Pro" models will feature both a "hole-punch" and a pill-shaped cutout for the front camera and Face ID...
Foldable iPhone 2023 Feature Blue

No Foldable iPhone Expected Until 2023 at the Earliest, But 2024 More Likely

Monday December 13, 2021 12:13 pm PST by
Apple is not expected to introduce a foldable iPhone until 2023 at the earliest, with 2024 being the more likely target date, according to display analyst Ross Young. Rumors about a foldable iPhone have died down in recent months, but there continues to be evidence that Apple is at least working on prototypes of foldable devices. In September 2020, it was suggested that Samsung had provided f...
apple ar headset concept 2

Apple AR/VR Headset Again Rumored to Feature Micro OLED Displays While Samsung Readies 'Hologram' AR Device Competitor

Thursday February 24, 2022 6:28 am PST by
Apple's mixed-reality headset has again been rumored to feature advanced micro OLED displays, Korea's ET News reports. Concept render based on purported leaked information by Ian Zelbo Micro-OLED displays are built directly on to chip wafers rather than a glass substrate, which results in displays that are thinner, smaller, and more power efficient. They allow for pixel sizes in the range of...
OLED iPad Pro and MacBook Pro

Apple Likely to Use Samsung's Tandem OLED Displays for Future iPads and Macs

Thursday March 3, 2022 3:43 am PST by
Samsung has begun developing more advanced OLED panels that should meet Apple's requirements for use in future iPads and Macs, according to a new report from The Elec. Previous reports have suggested Apple intends to release an iPad with an OLED display provided by Samsung in 2024, but Apple is seeking OLED panels for larger displays that have a "two-stack tandem structure," which have two...
top stories jan 8

Top Stories: iPhone 14 Pro Without Notch, AirPods Pro 2, and More for 2022

Saturday January 8, 2022 6:00 am PST by
Happy New Year 2022! With calendars turning over to the new year, it's a great opportunity to look ahead at expectations for 2022 and there has been no shortage of rumors on that front already. This week saw rumors about the iPhone 14 Pro, AirPods Pro 2, the next iPhone SE, and more, while we wrapped up 2021 and kicked off 2022 with the first two episodes of our new podcast, The MacRumors...
foldpad filmic twitter

Apple's Even Bigger iPad Pro Could Be Foldable

Friday March 25, 2022 2:00 am PDT by
Apple could be working on an even larger, foldable iPad Pro model, multiple reports appear to indicate. Display Supply Chain Consultants (DSCC) analyst Ross Young recently claimed that Apple is exploring the possibility of offering notebooks with foldable displays. The company is said to be discussing such devices with displays around 20 inches in size with its suppliers. This display size...
foldable macbook pro with keyboard space gray red majin bu

How Would a MacBook With a Foldable Display Work?

Wednesday February 23, 2022 9:04 am PST by
Amid reports of Apple working on a notebook with a foldable display, how exactly could such a device be implemented? Concept by Majin Bu Earlier this week, Display Supply Chain Consultants (DSCC) analyst Ross Young claimed that Apple is exploring the possibility of offering notebooks with foldable displays. The company is said to be discussing such devices with displays around 20-inches in...
studio display renders

Cheaper 27-Inch 'Studio Display' Reportedly Coming at Tomorrow's Apple Event

Monday March 7, 2022 7:41 am PST by
Apple's long-awaited consumer-level display, reportedly set to be called the "Studio Display," will launch tomorrow during Apple's "Peek Performance" event, according to a new rumor from YouTuber Luke Miani. In a video showcasing renders alleged to be the upcoming "Mac Studio," Miani also shares renders of the "Studio Display." According to the YouTuber who has an unverified track record...

Popular Stories

USB C Over Lightning Feature

EU Passes Law to Switch iPhone to USB-C by End of 2024

Tuesday October 4, 2022 3:30 am PDT by
The European Parliament today voted overwhelmingly in favor of enforcing USB-C as a common charging port across a wide range of consumer electronic devices, including the iPhone and AirPods, by the end of 2024. The proposal, known as a directive, forces all consumer electronics manufacturers who sell their products in Europe to ensure that a wide range of devices feature a USB-C port. This...
General iOS 16 Feature Yellow

10 New iOS 16 Features Coming Later This Year

Monday October 3, 2022 2:41 pm PDT by
iOS 16 was released to the public three weeks ago with a customizable Lock Screen, the ability to edit iMessages, improvements to Focus modes, and much more. And in the coming months, iPhone and iPad users have even more new features to look forward to. We've rounded up 10 new features coming to the iPhone and iPad later this year, according to Apple. Many of the features are part of iOS...
ipad pro m1 feature

Gurman: Apple Event This October Remains Unlikely, No Touch ID for iPhone 15

Sunday October 2, 2022 6:41 am PDT by
Apple is developing new iPad Pro, Mac, and Apple TV models, and at least some of these products will be released in October, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. However, Gurman continues to believe that Apple is unlikely to hold an event this month. In the latest edition of his Power On newsletter, Gurman said "the big iPhone 14 unveiling last month was probably it for Apple in 2022 in...
iOS 16

Apple Preparing iOS 16.0.3 With More Bug Fixes Following iPhone 14 Launch

Monday October 3, 2022 7:53 am PDT by
iOS 16.0.2 was released last month with several bug fixes for iPhone 14 issues, excessive copy and paste permission prompts, and more. Now, evidence suggests that Apple is planning to release iOS 16.0.3 with additional bug fixes. Evidence of an upcoming iOS 16.0.3 software update has shown up in MacRumors analytics logs, which have been a reliable indicator in the past. There are several...
Apple SIM Card

Apple SIM No Longer Available for Activating New Cellular Data Plans on iPads

Sunday October 2, 2022 8:04 am PDT by
As of October 1, Apple SIM is no longer available for activating new cellular data plans on supported iPad models, according to an Apple support document. Introduced in 2014, the Apple SIM was designed to allow iPad users to activate cellular data plans from multiple carriers around the world. Initially, the Apple SIM was a physical nano-SIM card, but it was embedded inside later iPad Pro...
maxresdefault

Video: AirPods Pro 2 vs. Bose QuietComfort II

Monday October 3, 2022 12:50 pm PDT by
Apple on September 23 officially launched the second-generation version of the AirPods Pro, introducing updated Active Noise Cancellation, Adaptive Transparency, improved sound, and more. Right around the same time, Bose introduced new QuietComfort II earbuds with many similar features, so we thought we'd compare the two to see which has the edge. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for ...
General YouTube Feature 1

You May Soon Need to Be a YouTube Premium Subscriber to Watch 4K Videos

Monday October 3, 2022 4:29 am PDT by
YouTube may make watching videos in 4K quality on the platform exclusive to only YouTube Premium subscribers, according to screenshots posted by users on Twitter and Reddit. On Reddit (1,2) and Twitter, some users have started to recently notice that on iOS, and presumably across other platforms also, YouTube is now saying that in order to watch videos in 4K, the user must be a paying...
dynamic island alan dye

Apple Executives Talk About iPhone 14 Pro's Dynamic Island in New Interview

Sunday October 2, 2022 10:48 am PDT by
In a new interview, Apple's senior vice president of software engineering, Craig Federighi, and Apple's vice president of human interface design, Alan Dye, sat down to discuss the thinking behind the iPhone 14 Pro's Dynamic Island and how it was developed. During the interview with the Japanese magazine Axis, Federighi, who oversees the development of iOS, said Dynamic Island represents the...