The Sellers Research Group (that’s me) is dubious about this report, but according to DigiTimes (a subscription is required to read the article), Apple is working with suppliers to develop a foldable iPad.
The article says that small-scale production could begin as early as the end of 202 with Apple announcing product in late 2024 or early 2025.
This isn’t a new prediction. In January, a series of tweets by the usually-accurate analyst Ming-Chi Kuo says Apple will release a foldable iPad with a carbon fiber kickstand next year. He says a carbon fiber kickstand will enable it to be lighter and more durable. Kuo thinks a foldable iPad will boost shipments and improve the product mix.
Even though I’m somewhat skeptical, there are have numerous reports and patent filings by Apple to hint at foldable iPads, as well as foldable iPhones. An April 2022 article by The Elec claimed that Apple is working with LG to develop a foldable OLED display panel with “ultra-thin” cover glass for future iPads and Mac laptops.
Also, Apple has filed for, and/or been granted, several patents for foldable devices over the years. One is for a “foldable cover and display for an electronic device” configured to be moved between a folded configuration and an unfolded configuration by bending the cover layer along the foldable region. Others granted patents are for “folding devices with geared hinges.”
Speaking of foldable devices, a July 21 rumor claimed (again) that Apple is working on a 20-inch Mac laptop with a foldable display. And, of course, rumors of a foldable iPhone have abounded for years.
Still, I’m skeptical that we’ll see an “iPad Fold,” “iPhone Fold,” or “MacBook Fold” anything in the near future.