Between patents and other leaks, there is no longer any doubt that Apple is indeed working on a folding phone. Its release schedule remains very uncertain, however, so the device should not see the light of day for perhaps several years. Among the reasons for this “delay”, we can in particular cite a fairly intelligent positioning which consists in first checking that the market has proven itself.
But today, it is a whole other factor which makes speak about him: that of subcontractors. Indeed, Ross Young (of Display Supply Chain Consultants) assures that they would simply not be … not ready !
Also not enough UTG capacity to support Apple. But that is changing.
– Ross Young (@DSCCRoss) January 10, 2022
A question of volume?
For the analyst, factories that know how to manufacture slabs UTG (for ultra thin glass, i.e. very thin glasses) would not yet be able to support the potential mass of orders required by Apple for such a change. Which makes sense, given that when releasing its foldable iPhone, the company could effectively democratize the concept, as it intends to do with its VR headset.
Young does not give precise figures, but we know that the production of front displays on current iPhones runs into the hundreds of millions every year. However, the stock of flexible smartphones is still very far from it, as is demand.
Several suppliers in sight
Currently, Samsung already sells the Z Fold 3 and the Z Flip 3, which are enjoying some success. In addition, this company manufactures screens on the assembly line for Apple, and therefore has all the necessary know-how for a possible foldable iPhone.
LG and BOE Electronics are less sought after by Apple, but remain among its main providers.