The world’s first foldable tablet may just come from Apple and it could launch as soon as next year, says a new report from DigiTimes.
According to the report, which was spotted by MacRumors, the foldable iPad is currently undergoing ‘intensive development’. The hardware suppliers for this mysterious tablet remain unknown, but the slate is expected to go into a small production run near the end of 2024. If everything goes as planned, we could see this foldable iPad hit the stores at the end of 2024 or early 2025.
According to earlier rumors, Apple has dedicated four years to the development of this product, during which time it underwent several design iterations in the quest for enhancements. The rationale for the company’s choice to pursue a foldable iPad over a foldable iPhone lies in the fact that this specific market accounts for a relatively modest portion of the company’s total revenue.
By opting to mass-produce thousands of units in a single production run for the foldable iPad, it minimizes the number of issues the company must address if any complications arise.
Apple’s endeavor to perfect the foldable iPad confronts a substantial obstacle in the form of its panels and hinges. Unlike most rival products, which commonly exhibit a noticeable crease along the center of their foldable handsets or tablets, Apple likely perceives this crease as a cosmetic flaw.
To overcome this challenge, the tech titan has forged partnerships with industry leaders such as Samsung and LG to scale up the production of flexible OLED panels that exhibit only minor creasing effects.
Apple also wants to make the hinge design simple, though reports have said that it could include up to 885 parts, which sounds nothing close to simple. Finer details such as pricing and specifications will only appear as we get closer to the launch date next year.