The foldable phone has become a trend, and Apple is not far behind.
The craze of flexible displays is not new. The smartphone manufacturers were already working on this crack-up technology, and Samsung made sure to kick-off 2019 with a bang and introduced its first every foldable phone in the form of Samsung Galaxy F, which was earlier rumored to be named as Galaxy 10 or Galaxy X.
Other than that, we have already witnessed the dawn of foldable phone in the form of Royole FlexPai, the world’s first foldable smartphone. Even companies like Microsoft, Huawei, and even Motorola have also expressed their apprehensions to get into the market of foldable smartphones.
With so much of going on in the smartphone industry, we expect Apple to make its mark with a stunning folding iPhone. As per a statement quoted by one of the analysts of Bank of America, the next significant transformation in the iPhone series will carry the foldable design.
Another report hints at the designing phase of the foldable iPhone concept, which is underway and the first iPhone with a foldable display is expected to be rolled out in the mid of 2020.
One of the major hurdles for Apple in crafting a folding iPhone display remains the fact that the company heavily relies on the Samsung OLED screens for its latest iPhones like iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max.
Going by the Goldman Sachs analysts report cited in Business Insider, Samsung won’t be sharing the foldable technology with its greatest rival in the near future and this throw opens Apple to an arduous task.
The reports of Apple collaborating with LG for screen manufacturing is also ripe. Interestingly, even LG is experimenting with foldable screen technology, but that is for TVs. Still, we can expect the South Korean multinational electronics company to assist Apple with the smartphone foldable displays.
Another major thing that seems to be a significant hurdle in Apple’s intent of foldable iPhone is the use of polymer blend, which is currently in use by all the companies who are churning up foldable displays. With Apple reliance on glass-maker Corning, the company may be willing to wait until bendable glass solution erupts out.
In a recent trip of CNET to Corning's HQ, the reality of bendable glass was confirmed, but the display is not yet flexible as polymer blend.
With the release date of foldable iPhone getting ripe, the foldable iPhone rumors have also made their way into the mobile industry. With many people twitting about the foldable iPhone rumors and leaks, a user may get confused with what might finally land up.
As per a confirmed report, Apple will launch a foldable iPhone keyboard along with the new iPhone. The foldable keyboard will be easily fit in the pocket and can be used along the folding iPhone screen.
Another accessory that will come along is the foldable iPhone stand that will hold up the foldable iPhone and also it makes more sense to add a stand with large displays. It will also let the user keep the device in a viewable position.
If we look at Apple’s interest in the foldable phone’s market, it dates back to 2011 when Apple applied for the foldable iPhone patents and got it approved in 2014. Apple’s iPhone with foldable display blueprints were similar to what we saw in Samsung's Galaxy Fold.
According to the United States Patent and Trademark Office, Apple has recently filed for an extension of the foldable iPhone patent. Unlike the earlier patent, this time Apple has included more details and specifications which indicates towards the screen that can fold inside out.
Image Credit: Patently Apple
The report stated,
"Apple's design plans were filed back in October and the patent application only means the idea is out there and hasn't been approved yet."
If we believe a report from My Smart Price, Apple may pitch in with a flexible display that can be wrapped around the devices like smartphone, tablet, e-book reader, and other media players.
The designs crafted by Roy Gilsing, a Dutch industrial designer also suggests future folding iPhone displays which will pack two displays in a sleek handset. The design forwarded by Roy Gilsing features a 1:3 aspect ratio and foldable display with a 2:3 aspect ratio.
“It would be so cool to hold an iPad-size screen in your pocket. And it’s really convenient to make calls and chat with a long style phone.”
The above image shed some light on the iPhone model in 2020.
As remarked by Patently Apple, Apple may bring up temperature sensor of its future iPhone with foldable display and will ideally detect how warm the device is. The foldable iPhone patent filed by Apple jotted down ways to heat the areas which get folded.
The abstract of Apple’s patent on “Electronic Devices With Flexible Displays” states,
“To facilitate bending about the bend axis without damage when the display is cold, a portion of the display that overlaps the bend axis may be selectively heated.”
It will also save the device from getting cracking and protect from a magnetic locking system.
Apple’s foldable iPhone patent clearly defines the company’s desperation to come up with a durable foldable screen. However, it’s still time we actually see Apple’s foldable display unveiling.
“The portion of the display that overlaps the bend axis may be self-heated by illuminating pixels in the portion of the display that overlaps the bend axis or may be heated using a heating element or other heating structure that provides heat to the portion of the display overlapping the bend axis.”
Apple’s Foldable iPhone Patent
Frankly speaking, we don’t see an iPhone with foldable display launch soon, neither there is an official statement from Apple’s side. Besides designing a flexible display, there should be a mix of software to support it.
For it, Apple has to leave the door open for the developers to try their hands in the foldable screen compatible with the iPhone and after that, the things can be taken forward.
With the current timeframe speculation, it’s hard to anticipate a foldable iPhone in 2019. Putting everything in place, the foldable iPhone release date is slated to be in 2020. Even a foldable iPhone in 2020 is something doubtful.
An unnamed industry source told The Korea Times,
“Apple is attempting to release new iPhones with enhanced features next year, and it is eyeing developing foldable iPhones, which will come several years later.”
It will also give ample time to the American multinational technology company to learn from the mistakes and glitches surrounding foldable smartphones that will surface this year and accordingly, we can see an impeccable iPhone with a foldable display.
Get ready to experience a stunner in the form of foldable iPhone in 2020.
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