Apple’s Hasn’t Released a Foldable iPhone and It’s Paying Off

Samsung Galaxy Flip Z1 Credit: Framesira / Shutterstock
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Apple is often a technology trendsetter. But, on the other hand, it’s also slow to adopt other trends or popular technologies in the industry. In most cases, that pays off.

If you need evidence that Apple’s patience is a boon, just look at foldable smartphones. Unlike some of its competitors, Apple hasn’t rushed to debut a folding iPhone. That’s a good thing.

Foldable Smartphones

The first real foldable smartphone to make a splash in the tech industry was Samsung’s Galaxy Fold. But even before that device could launch, it was plagued by critical durability issues.

In the wake of that delay and resulting media fallout, Samsung is trying again with a new device called the Galaxy Z Flip. Other Android manufacturers, like Motorola, are also jumping on the bandwagon.

And, at this point, it seems like some of the lessons learned from the Galaxy Fold’s failures haven’t really sunk in.

Take the Galaxy Z Flip. Over the weekend, popular YouTuber JerryRigEverything tested the durability of the device and found that its “ultra-thin glass” display scratched like plastic.

In fact, pressing on the display with a fingernail caused a permanent indent.

That wasn’t all. One early Galaxy Z Flip adopter received his device in the mail last week. When he opened the box, he found a large crack down the center — possibly due to cold weather.

In response, Samsung notes that users should handle the display “with care” and avoid pressing down on the screen too hard. But, again, this is supposedly a premium device with a $1,380 price tag.

The Motorola Razr isn’t faring much better. Ray Wong from tech publication Input noted that the display on their Motorola Razr device is already coming apart a week after purchase. The damage includes unsightly cosmetic warping, as well as a malfunctioning touchscreen.

Interestingly, Wong theorizes that the damage to the device’s display may be due to folding and unfolding in cold weather — just like the Galaxy Z Flip.

Apple’s Patience

Apple was slow to adopt 4G LTE and 4×4 MIMO technologies in its flagship smartphones. This year, it’s largely expected to release its first 5G smartphone, months after its rivals.

While Apple’s slow adoption in those cases allowed it to avoid early problems with cellular technologies, it’s worth venturing that the company’s patience with foldable smartphones may just pay off the most.

Folding smartphones are still in their very early stages. You could make the argument that all of the foldable devices on the market today are being rushed out in an effort to be first.

And Apple doesn’t seem to be playing that game. While there are rumors of an Apple foldable iPhone or iPad being in the works, the company seems to be taking its time.

Perhaps most interestingly, Apple has even patented technology that could mitigate the effects of cold weather on foldable displays. That suggests that it identified one of the trend’s most critical flaws before its competitors.

In any case, a foldable iPhone is still a long way off. For iPhone and Apple fans, that’ll undoubtedly turn out to be a good thing.

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