Apple Was Awarded a Patent for a Foldable Phone. Time to Flip Out! Predictions suggest an Apple flip phone could be available by 2025.
For any Apple fan who has watched "The Wire" way too many times, the dream of an old-school flip phone with new-school tech has been elusive.
Well, that dream is about to become a reality.
On Tuesday, the U.S. Patent Office awarded Apple a patent for a display with touch sensors on a "foldable electronic device." Per the patent description, users will have multiple touchpoints on the device (not just the screen) to control things like the camera and headphone volume, and the device may have input-output ports to connect with joysticks, scrolling wheels, touchpads, microphones, keyboards, and other accessories.
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It all sounds very cool, but don't start camping out in line at your local Apple Store just yet.
Per Yahoo! Finance, FT International analyst Ming-Chi Kuo predicted that the folding Apple phone would hit stores in 2025. Likewise, UBS analyst David Vogt said he doesn't believe the phone will be available this year but is excited nonetheless.
"We believe that a foldable iPhone model could lead to an uptick in consumer purchasing and upgrade rate within the smartphone segment," Vogt wrote in a note to investors. "If a foldable device compresses the upgrade rate for iPhones or attracts 'switchers' from the Android ecosystem, iPhone unit growth could come in above our 238 million estimates in [fiscal 2024] given an installed base of roughly 1.2 billion iPhones and roughly 1.3 billion smartphones shipped a year."
It's been a great 2023 for Apple stockholders, reports The Motley Fool. "Shares have risen about 17%, easily surpassing the S&P 500's 7% gain over this same period," writes Daniel Sparks, adding, "one analyst thinks the stock still has plenty of room to run."
Let the folding begin!