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Apple’s first foldable iPhone will reportedly launch in 2022, iPad mini to be discontinued

Apple plans to challenge Samsung with a foldable smartphone only in 2022. A new report claims that Apple will launch four new iPhone models in 2021 as well. These devices will feature new chipsets and advanced camera features, but the design will remain the same.

Also Read: Apple launches MacBook Air, MacBook Pro and Mac mini with new M1 chip

Samsung and Huawei are currently in the process of introducing their second-generation foldable smartphones. Apple, however, seems to wait for the segment to mature before it enters with new technology, and the same is the case with its first foldable iPhone. The report from Israeli website The Verifier claims that Apple will discontinue the iPad mini after the launch of the foldable iPhone.

Apple’s first foldable iPhone to launch in 2022

Apple has filed a patent with USPTO detailing a foldable screen (Source: Patently Apple)

The report further notes that Apple has already started testing folding screens for the next generation iPhone. It is not clear whether Apple will adopt an inward folding or an outward folding design for its first foldable iPhone. The delay could be because of a lack of folding screens available in the market that offer reliability and durability.

Apple had indicated its plan to launch a foldable device with filing of a patent in February of last year. The patent details a screen that can be folded upto three times and can be used as a tablet or a smartphone. The report also claims that Apple is interested in folding screens made by Samsung. The Korean company could become the exclusive supplier of display panels for the first folding iPhone.

Apple has not always been the first to market with new technology. It added 5G to iPhones only this year and support for widgets only with the release of iOS 14. By not rushing to market with a foldable phone, Apple might be avoiding the fate of the first Galaxy Fold. Another reason could be lack of screens available in sufficient quantity for a mass market product.

Corning is also said to be working on folding screens that will rival Samsung’s ultra-thin glass display. Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo had recently said that Apple will release four iPhone 13 models in 2021 with a similar design and updated ultra wide-angle camera.

Apple foldable iPhone pricing and availability (rumoured)

This new report reiterates that claim and suggests that the first foldable iPhone won’t arrive until November 2022. The report also indicates that Apple’s first foldable iPhone will be priced at $1,499 (~Rs 1,11,400). It is said to feature 8GB of RAM and 256GB internal storage. As always, we recommend taking this with a grain of salt.

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Karthekayan Iyer

Karthekayan is an Assistant Editor at Pricebaba. He covers consumer technology for Pricebaba and leads the development of the deals section. With a degree in Instrumentation Engineering, Karthekayan spent three years working for an engineering firm before becoming a tech reporter. He writes news, features and reviews the latest gadgets. He has over 8 years' experience and has worked with Indian Express, Digit.in and BGR India in the past.