Apple is said to have begun work on a foldable iPhone that may be introduced in the future. According to a report from Bloomberg, the Cupertino-based company is conducting internal testing on foldable screen prototypes. The report states that Apple is still in the early phases of development and the final product is likely to still be years away from being released.
Bloomberg’s reports state that the foldable screen Apple is testing is similar to those from Samsung which have invisible hinges with the electronics behind the display. This is unlike devices like Microsoft’s Surface Duo that have a visible hinge separating two panels. Based on the report, the prototype described seems similar to the new Motorola Razr and Samsung Galaxy Z Flip.
The report goes on to say that Apple’s foldable screen could unfold to around the size of the iPhone 12 Pro Max. However, Apple has not yet finalised the actual size of the foldable screen just yet.
If the report is true, then Apple would be joining a growing list of companies that are making foldable smartphones. Competitors like Samsung, Huawei and Motorola already have a head start over Apple. The South Korean company has already released several foldable phones to the market since 2019. Last year the company released two foldable phones: the Galaxy Z Flip and the Galaxy Z Fold 2.
Huawei has also made strides forward with its foldable devices. The company introduced their second generation foldable device, the Mate Xs in early 2020. The Chinese phone maker took a different approach by creating a screen that folds on the outside of the device rather than inside like the Galaxy Fold.
Oppo also announced a new prototype device that features a rolling OLED display during its Inno Day 2020 event back in November 2020. The device looks like a typical full screen smartphone with a 6.7″ display with curved corners, but it can be stretched to reveal an expanded 7.4″ display should you require a bigger screen.
LG also hopped on the bandwagon during this year’s virtual Consumer Electronics Show. It introduced its upcoming rollable display phone called the LG Rollable, which is set to go on sale later this year.
Beyond Apple’s foldable phone ambitions, Bloomberg also reported that Apple is looking to introduce an in-screen fingerprint sensor in its upcoming iPhone models. Given the current situation with the global pandemic and wide adoption of face masks hindering the ability to use Face ID, it definitely makes sense that Apple would be looking into this feature.
However, it is not for certain that the in-display Touch ID feature will ship in 2021’s iPhones but Bloomberg said Apple is still testing the tech for inclusion this year.