Apple will launch a foldable iPad instead of an iPhone in 2024, analyst predicts

Apple will launch a foldable iPad instead of an iPhone in 2024, analyst predicts

Apple CEO Tim Cook speaks during an event at the Apple Park campus in Cupertino, California on September 7, 2022. In a presentation titled Far Out, Apple is set to unveil the iPhone 14 line, a new line of smartwatches and new AirPods.

Nic Coury | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Apple will likely launch an iPad with a foldable screen in 2024, analyst firm CCS Insight said on Tuesday, predicting the US tech giant will soon start experimenting with foldable technology.

CCS Insight released its annual forecast report on Tuesday in which the group’s analysts forecast future products and trends.

In the latest report, CCS Insight predicted that Apple would launch a foldable iPad in two years rather than starting with a foldable iPhone.

This is contrary to other smartphone makers like Samsung which have launched foldable smartphones rather than tablets.

“Right now, it doesn’t make sense for Apple to create a foldable iPhone. We think they’ll steer clear of that trend and probably dip a toe in the water with a foldable iPad,” chief executive Ben Wood told CNBC. of research at CCS Insight. in an interview.

“A foldable iPhone will be very high risk for Apple. First, it would have to be incredibly expensive so as not to cannibalize existing iPhones,” Wood added.

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The analyst said a foldable iPhone would likely cost around $2,500. Apple’s iPhone 14 Pro Max with the most storage, which is currently the most expensive model, costs around $1,599.

Wood also said that if Apple had any technical issues with the foldable phone then it would be a “feeding frenzy” with critics attacking Apple for the issues.

Still, Apple has “no choice but to react as the foldable trend picks up steam,” Wood said, so the company will start with an iPad.

He said it would give Apple a chance to learn how to implement and evolve foldable screen technology as well as “breathe new life” into the iPad lineup.

Apple was not immediately available for comment when contacted by CNBC.

There have been a number of rumors about Apple’s intentions with foldable screen products. Earlier this year, market research firm Display Supply Chain Consultants said Apple is unlikely to enter the foldable smartphone market until 2025 at the earliest. However, the company said Apple is exploring foldable technology for screens around 20 inches. That could be focused on a new foldable laptop product, the market research firm said.

Predictions about a foldable iPhone have been around for at least four years. Last year, Ming-Chi Kuo of TF International Securities, a prominent Apple analyst known for his credible predictions, said the company could release an iPhone with a folding screen in 2024.

Apple will combine 5G and processor in the chip

CCS Insight also predicts that Apple will continue to invest in its own chip design.

Currently, the Cupertino giant is designing its own custom chips for iPhone and iPad. It relies on the American chipmaker Qualcomm for modems that allow these devices to connect to mobile internet networks for 5G connectivity.

However, CCS Insight said Apple will likely integrate its own 5G modem into the A-series of processors for a “one-chip” solution for iPhones in 2025.

Apple acquired Intel’s modem business in 2019. This led to speculation that the tech giant would very quickly abandon Qualcomm and use its own modems in its devices. However, this has not happened yet.

TF International Securities’ Kuo said in June that he expects the company to continue using Qualcomm chips for iPhones released in 2023.

Wood said Apple had “built internal capabilities” so it could use its own modems in iPhones.

“They (Apple) have been shooting this target for years. They acquired the assets of Intel from the modem unit, they’ve been working hard to accelerate that, they’re very keen to make sure that they continue to develop their checkpoints that they have,” Wood said.

“They don’t want to keep paying a third-party vendor for their technology.”

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