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Apple’s First Foldable iPhone Unlikely to Be Unveiled Before 2027: TrendForce

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It seems to be an open secret that Apple is in the early stages of developing a foldable iPhone. The Cupertino tech giant is yet to confirm its existence, but it has been registering different patents for foldable technologies for some time now. A new report by TrendForce says Apple may not launch its own folding-screen phone until 2027. The crease of the foldable phone remains a major concern for Apple and that seems to be causing the delay. As Apple is waiting longer to release its first foldable, several other brands like Samsung, OnePlus, Vivo, and others have launched foldable phones heating the competition.

Apple iPhone Fold could arrive by 2027

Market research firm TrendForce, in its latest report, notes that Apple is “unlikely to release a foldable phone before 2027”, but its entry could significantly shift market dynamics. The iPhone maker is reportedly still evaluating component specifications and performance, with strict requirements for crease and reliability.

In March, a Korean outlet claimed that Apple pushed back the launch timeline for its foldable iPhone from the fourth quarter of 2026 to the first quarter of 2027 after considering the preparation for various items, including the supply of foldable displays.

Meanwhile, TrendForce expects foldable smartphone shipments to reach 17.8 million units in 2024, making up only 1.5 percent of the smartphone market. Samsung, which had over 80 percent of the market share in 2022 is now struggling to keep 50 percent market share after facing increased competition from various brands. Huawei made significant strides with its 4G Pocket S in 2023 and the brand could potentially increase market share to 30 percent with its first tri-fold phone release in Q3 this year.

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The report notes that Xiaomi, Oppo, and Vivo struggled to grow their foldable phone sales, while Motorola made a strong entrance with its Razr 40 and Razr 40 Ultra.

Apple foldable phone: What we know so far

Apple is said to be working on prototypes of at least two clamshell-style foldable iPhone models and is said to be in discussion for supply orders with LG Display (LGD) and Samsung Display (SDC). It has applied for patents related to foldable displays. The first foldable phone from the brand is said to feature a 6-inch external display and an 8-inch main display.


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