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Folding iPhone with Apple Pencil support is just an analyst echoing rumors

A few sites are covering a prediction by a Chinese analyst of a folding iPhone with Apple Pencil support being launched in 2023 – but there doesn’t appear to be anything to it…

iPhone in Canada reports:

Chinese analyst firm EqualOcean has reported that Apple’s first foldable iPhone may add Apple Pencil support. Additionally, the firm claims that the foldable iPhone will feature a 7.3 to 7.6-inch OLED display and may launch in 2023.

So a folding iPhone “may” launch in 2023, and it “may” include Apple Pencil support. This is literally just an analyst parroting rumors that have been doing the rounds forever.

Rumors of a folding iPhone have been around for years, and first got a boost after Samsung’s (disastrous) launch of the first-gen Galaxy Fold.

To be clear, Apple does have multiple patents for folding phones. One of those addressed a key problem suffered by the Galaxy Fold and other Android folding phones: How you prevent the screen being damaged by repeated folding and unfolding?

There is no question that the company is experimenting with the form-factor – indeed, it would be inconceivable that this wouldn’t be the case. There’s also no doubt in my mind that we will see a folding iPhone at some point. If nothing else, Apple will want to assess reaction and demand, much as it did for the iPhone 12 mini.

There has also been hard evidence of progress toward such a launch. A report late last year said that Apple has had Foxconn making samples for testing, which Bloomberg corroborated last month.

According to Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman, Apple is developing a new iPhone model that can be folded. This new version is expected to compete with similar Samsung devices such as Galaxy Z Fold and Galaxy Z Flip. However, it’s unclear whether this folding iPhone will see the light of day.

The report mentions that Apple engineers have been internally testing prototypes of folding screens for some time, but plans to actually launch a device like this are still unknown. According to a source familiar with the subject, Apple doesn’t yet have a fully functional folding device, which means this prototype is still in an early development stage and may never be launched.

But this report? An unknown analyst with no track record holding a finger in the air.

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Avatar for Ben Lovejoy Ben Lovejoy

Ben Lovejoy is a British technology writer and EU Editor for 9to5Mac. He’s known for his op-eds and diary pieces, exploring his experience of Apple products over time, for a more rounded review. He also writes fiction, with two technothriller novels, a couple of SF shorts and a rom-com!

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