Apple Is Working on an All-New ‘Folding Mac,’ Foldable iPhone Pushed to 2025

Folding MacBook Concept Credit: AstroPad / Elijah Fox
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Although we’ve been hearing rumours of a foldable iPhone for years, multiple reports over the past few months have suggested it’s still a few years away. In an interesting new wrinkle, however, it looks like Apple may be redirecting its efforts toward a future MacBook instead.

It’s clear that Apple has been working on testing folding screens for the iPhone, but for whatever reason, it appears to have shelved the idea for now with reports that it’s been pushed to 2024 or beyond.

Now, display analyst Ross Young, who has a pretty solid track record when it comes to anything concerning Apple’s screen technology, has confirmed with his sources that a foldable iPhone won’t be appearing before 2025.

We delayed our expectations for Apple entering the foldable smartphone market by two years to 2025 after discussions with our supply chain contacts. The company does not appear to be in a hurry to enter the foldable smartphone market, and it may even take longer than that.Ross Young

However, Young has tossed out a really fascinating curveball, saying that Apple is exploring the possibility of a foldable Mac instead.

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According to Young’s sources, this technology would be used to produce a larger screen, rather than a smaller MacBook, with the folding display coming in at around 20 inches.

To be fair, the resulting product may not be called a “MacBook” per se, and it certainly wouldn’t be a MacBook as we know it today. Young suggests that this will be an entirely new product category for Apple that would supplement, rather than replace, its existing MacBook lineup.

The Mythic Touchscreen Mac

A certain segment of Apple fans have been hoping for years that Apple would move to a touchscreen Mac, however Apple has always shown a reluctance to do so.

When questioned, Apple executives usually point to the iPad and Mac as both being best in class devices, while suggesting that a hybrid device would involve too many compromises.

They’re probably not wrong, at least when you consider the MacBook as it exists today. However, this future folding Mac would be a horse of an entirely different colour.

For one thing, it obviously wouldn’t include a physical hardware keyboard, as that would defeat the purpose of using a folding screen. Instead, Young says, it would incorporate a full-sized touchscreen keyboard on the “lower half” for use as a traditional notebook — but that’s not the only way you’d be able to use it.

This size could create a new category for Apple and would result in a true dual use product, a notebook with a full-size keyboard when folded and for use as a monitor when not folded and used with an external keyboard. Ross Young

According to Young, the idea is to allow folks to also unfold it completely, in which case it would become a portable 20-inch display that could be used with an external keyboard, iMac-style. At that size, Apple would also easily be able to deliver resolutions of 4K or even higher.

From what we can surmise from the report, this would not be a foldable iPad, although it’s easy to see how it might have some things in common with Apple’s tablet. However, Young clearly uses the word “foldable notebook,” suggesting that it’s going to be more powerful and flexible, likely running macOS or some derivative of that.

Still, this far out it’s hard to say exactly what form the device will take, or even what Apple’s intentions are. It could very well be a long-term replacement for the MacBook and iPad, in much the same way Apple believes its AR/VR headset will usher in the next generation of computing, replacing the iPhone almost entirely by 2030.

[The information provided in this article has NOT been confirmed by Apple and may be speculation. Provided details may not be factual. Take all rumors, tech or otherwise, with a grain of salt.]

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