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TrendForce predicts Apple’s foldable iPhone will not be revealed until 2027.

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In Short:

Apple is reportedly developing a foldable iPhone, expected to launch by 2027 due to concerns regarding the crease in the design. Competition in the foldable phone market is heating up with brands like Samsung and OnePlus already launching their models. TrendForce estimates 17.8 million foldable smartphones to be shipped in 2024, with Apple’s entry expected to shift market dynamics significantly. The first Apple foldable phone is rumored to have a 6-inch external display and an 8-inch main display.


Apple iPhone Fold could arrive by 2027

It appears that Apple is in the early stages of developing a foldable iPhone. Although the Cupertino tech giant has not officially confirmed this, it has been actively registering patents related to foldable technologies. According to a new report by TrendForce, Apple may not introduce its own folding-screen phone until 2027. The challenge of the crease in the foldable phone seems to be a major factor causing this delay. While Apple is taking its time to unveil its first foldable device, several other brands such as Samsung, OnePlus, Vivo, and others have already launched foldable phones, intensifying the competition in the market.

Market Dynamics and Competition

Market research firm TrendForce, in its latest report, mentions that Apple is “unlikely to release a foldable phone before 2027”, but its entry could bring significant changes to the market dynamics. Apple is reportedly still evaluating component specifications and performance, with a strong emphasis on crease and reliability requirements.

Recently, a Korean outlet reported that Apple has moved the launch timeline of its foldable iPhone from the fourth quarter of 2026 to the first quarter of 2027. This decision was made after considering various factors, including the supply of foldable displays.

TrendForce predicts that foldable smartphone shipments will reach 17.8 million units in 2024, constituting only 1.5 percent of the smartphone market. Samsung, which held over 80 percent of the market share in 2022, is now facing tough competition, struggling to maintain a 50 percent market share. Huawei, on the other hand, made significant progress with its 4G Pocket S in 2023 and is expected to increase its market share to 30 percent with the release of its first tri-fold phone in Q3 of this year.

The report also highlights the performance of other brands such as Xiaomi, Oppo, Vivo, and Motorola in the foldable phone segment.

Apple Foldable Phone: What We Know So Far

Reports suggest that Apple is working on prototypes of at least two clamshell-style foldable iPhone models and is in discussions for supply orders with LG Display (LGD) and Samsung Display (SDC). The company has filed patents related to foldable displays. The first foldable phone from Apple is rumored to feature a 6-inch external display and an 8-inch main display.

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