Foldable iPhone just tipped with a huge 9-inch display

iPhone Flip foldable iPhone
(Image credit: #iOS Beta News/YouTube)

Update: The latest patents for Apple indicate a foldable iPhone — or iPad — is in the works.

Samsung has led the charge on foldable phones with the likes of the Galaxy Z Fold 3 and Galaxy Z Flip 3. Both of these phones are veritable marvels of engineering, despite some notable flaws. We've heard rumors about Apple's iPhone Flip plans for a while now, and now there's new fuel for the fire.

Well-known analyst Ming-Chi Kuo (opens in new tab) (via 9to5Mac (opens in new tab)) dropped two bits of news on this topic. He says we shouldn't expect to see a foldable iPhone until 2025, revising his earlier report that stated that one would arrive in 2024. Apple takes a while to adopt new technologies in many cases, and foldables are no doubt challenging to design and test.

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More importantly, however, is the revelation that Apple might be working on a phone/tablet hybrid, much like the Galaxy Z Fold. Folded, you would have a narrow, phone-like device, but when unfolded, you get a tablet. In fact, Apple is allegedly experimenting with a 9-inch display, which would dwarf the Galaxy Z Fold 3.

Granted, Kuo hedged his bets with the disclaimer that the 9-inch display "is to verify key technologies and may not be the final product spec." Furthermore, he stated that Apple has a small, medium, and large foldable strategy. What those vague sizes mean is anyone's guess, but there are rumors of a foldable MacBook in the early design stages.

Apple could ultimately decide that it doesn't even want to enter the foldable market, at least not yet. The product category is still new and there are lot of teething issues to sort out, like durability and battery life. But the promise that these devices offer entices many, if Samsung's latest Galaxy Z sales are anything to go by.

2025 is a long way off yet, so sit tight. Of course, all that waiting may be for naught if Apple decides to scrap its foldable iPhone plans. We're not sure if we'd prefer a Galaxy Z Fold-style iPhone or one like the Galaxy Z Flip that hearkens back to ultra-pocketable flip phones of old.

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Jordan Palmer
Phones Editor

Jordan is the Phones Editor for Tom's Guide, covering all things phone-related. He's written about phones for over six years and plans to continue for a long while to come. He loves nothing more than relaxing in his home with a book, game, or his latest personal writing project. Jordan likes finding new things to dive into, from books and games to new mechanical keyboard switches and fun keycap sets. Outside of work, you can find him poring over open-source software and his studies.