Apple’s first foldable iPad tipped to arrive in 2024 — before iPhone Flip

iPhone Flip Concept
(Image credit: EverythingApplePro)

We're excited about the rumored iPhone Flip, but we'd be just as interested in a foldable iPad, which may end up being Apple's first device with a flexible display.

That's according to Ben Wood, chief analyst and CMO for CSS Insights. As he said in a CNBC interview (opens in new tab): “Right now it doesn’t make sense for Apple to make a foldable iPhone. We think they will shun that trend and probably dip a toe in the water with a foldable iPad.”

Wood explains further that a foldable iPhone would not only be risky in terms of quality, which could damage the company's reputation, but would also have to be expensive to set it apart from normal iPhones. He estimates an alarmingly high price of $2,500, far more expensive than even the highest-specced foldables on the market today, let alone regular iPhones.

The best foldable phones around now are currently dominated by the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 ($1,799) and Galaxy Z Flip 4 ($999), but Samsung took a couple of generations to really nail the formula down after the troubled launch of the original Galaxy Fold. Going instead for a foldable tablet, where there's little competition right now, would mean Apple can refine its folding technology with less pressure before adding it to the iPhone line.

A foldable iPad is something we've possibly heard details of before. Apple was allegedly working on a 20-inch MacBook/iPad blend earlier this year, which could be used either as a full tablet with a separate keyboard or use part of the display for a virtual one.

As for the foldable iPhone, that's reportedly slated for release in 2025 according to analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. That would fit with what Wood says, although waiting another two and a bit years for a folding iPhone gives Samsung and other foldable phone makers a lot of time to extend their existing lead.

If you're content with your iPads being the non-folding kind, then today could be your lucky day. It's been heavily rumored that Apple will be revealing at least the new iPad Pro later today, with the new iPad Pro 2022 model featuring an upgraded chipset as its main upgrade.

Be sure to get up to speed on all the new Apple products expected this fall (opens in new tab) with our roundup. 

Read next: Move over, foldables — Motorola just showed off rollable phone concept.

Richard Priday
Staff Writer

Richard is a Tom's Guide staff writer based in London, covering news, reviews and how-tos for phones, tablets, gaming, and whatever else people need advice on. Following on from his MA in Magazine Journalism at the University of Sheffield, he's also written for WIRED U.K., The Register and Creative Bloq. When not at work, he's likely thinking about how to brew the perfect cup of specialty coffee.