Apple to launch foldable iPad instead of iPhone in 2024: Analyst

Apple to launch foldable iPad instead of iPhone in 2024: Analyst

Apple CEO Tim Cook speaks at an event at the Apple Park campus in Cupertino, California, on September 7, 2022. At the Far Out presentation, Apple will unveil the iPhone 14 line, a fresh range of smartwatches and new AirPods.

Nic Coury | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Apple is likely to launch an iPad with a foldable screen in 2024, analyst firm CCS Insight said on Tuesday, predicting that the US tech giant will soon begin experimenting with foldable technology.

CCS Insight released its annual forecast report on Tuesday, in which the group’s analysts provide forecasts on future products and trends.

In the latest report, CCS Insight predicted that Apple will launch a foldable iPad in two years, instead of starting with a foldable iPhone.

This contrasts with other smartphone makers such as Samsung launched foldable smartphones than tablets.

“Right now it doesn’t make sense for Apple to make a foldable iPhone. We think they’re going to stay away from that trend and probably dip their toe in the water with a foldable iPad,” Ben Wood, head of research at CCS Insight, told CNBC in an interview.

“The foldable iPhone is going to be a super risk for Apple. First, it would have to be incredibly expensive to not cannibalize existing iPhones,” added Wood.

Read more about technology and cryptogram from CNBC Pro

The analyst said the foldable iPhone should probably cost around $2,500. Apple’s iPhone 14 Pro Max with the largest memory, which is currently the most expensive model, costs about $1,599.

Wood also said that if Apple had any technical problems with the foldable phone, then it would be “fodder to feed” with critics attacking Apple for the problems.

Still, Apple “has no choice but to react as the trend toward foldable devices gains momentum,” Wood said, so the company will start with the iPad.

He said it would give Apple a chance to learn how to implement and scale foldable display technology, as well as “breathe new life” into the iPad range.

Apple was not immediately available for comment when contacted by CNBC.

There has been more outcry over Apple’s intentions with foldable display products. Earlier this year, market research firm Display Supply Chain Consultants he said It is unlikely that Apple will enter the foldable smartphone market until 2025 at the earliest. However, the company said Apple is researching foldable technology for screens around 20 inches in size. It could be focused on a new foldable notebook product, the market research firm said.

Predictions about the foldable iPhone in between there are at least four years. Last year, TF International Securities’ Ming-Chi Kuo, a prominent Apple analyst known for his credible predictions, said the company could announce A foldable iPhone in 2024.

Apple combines 5G and a processor in a chip

CCS Insight also predicts that Apple will continue to invest in its own chip design.

Currently, the Cupertino giant designs its own custom chips for the iPhone and iPad. It relies on an American chipmaker Qualcomm for modems that enable these devices to connect to mobile internet networks for 5G connectivity.

However, CCS Insight said Apple is likely to integrate its own 5G modem into the A series of processors for a “single-chip” solution for the iPhone in 2025.

Apple took over Intel’s modem business in 2019. This has led to speculation that the tech giant will soon ditch Qualcomm and use its own modems in its devices. However, that hasn’t happened yet.

TF International Securities’ Kuo said in June that he expects the company to continue to use Qualcomm chips for iPhones to be released in 2023.

Wood said Apple is “strengthening internal capabilities” to be able to use its own modems in iPhones.

“They (Apple) have been targeting this for years. They received funding from Intel modem units, they’ve been working hard to increase that, they’re very eager to make sure they continue to increase their control points that they have,” Wood said.

“They don’t want to keep paying a third-party vendor for their technology.”

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