Apple said to be testing prototype foldable screens for the iPhone

Apple is said to be working on a foldable iPhone.
PHOTO: Patently Apple

While a few Android handset makers are already launching foldable devices in the market, Apple is reportedly only starting to work on an iPhone with a foldable display.

A source familiar with the project told Bloomberg that Apple has developed prototype foldable displays for testing.

Similar to the foldable displays from Samsung, Apple's prototypes are said to have "a mostly invisible hinge" with the components located behind the display.

The source added that there have been internal discussions at Apple on several display sizes which include one that unfolds to a 6.7-inch display like the iPhone 12 Pro Max. 

As Apple does not have a full handset prototype for testing in its labs, there are currently no plans to launch a foldable iPhone.

Earlier this month, Economic Daily News (EDN) claimed that two foldable iPhone prototypes have passed internal durability tests with one of them being a clamshell with a flexbile display.

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EDN also reported in November 2020 that foldable iPhone prototypes have been sent to Foxconn for testing and a launch could be possible in September 2022.

Apple has been granted several patents related to a foldable device including a notification strip, a flexible hinge, and a flexible display with a bending region.

There are conflicting reports on what the first foldable device from Apple would be.

UBS claimed in 2019 that the first foldable device from Apple may not be an iPhone. This is later corroborated by tipster @jon_prosser who acknowledged that an iPhone + iPad like device is in the pipeline.

This article was first published in Hardware Zone.