Apple is working on a radically different iPhone, which could be released within the next two years.
According to a new report by Bank of America Merrill Lynch, the Cupertino firm is already working with its Asian manufacturing partners on a foldable phone.
“We expect the iPhones this fall to be largely unchanged for the OLED versions although size changes have proved to be a catalyst in the past,” analyst Wamsi Mohan wrote in an investors note on Friday.
“Our checks also suggest that Apple is working with suppliers on a foldable phone (that potentially could double up as a tablet) for launch in 2020.”
Mohan says he complied his report after meeting several of Apple’s suppliers in Asia.
It has long been rumoured that Apple has plans to release a foldable iPhone.
Last year, Apple applied for a patent on a phone that “opened and closed like a book”.
The patent revealed that Apple could be working on “an electronic device may have a flexible portion that allows the device to be folded”.
Meanwhile, a report in Korean media from last October said that Apple would use an LG display in its foldable iPhone.
It is worth noting that many patents from Apple, and indeed virtually every other tech company, never see the light of day.
Other manufacturers, including Samsung and Lenovo are also said to be working on foldable smartphones.
Last October, Chinese smartphone maker ZTE officially unveiled the Axon M, the world’s first foldable smartphone.
The phone has two 5.2 inch displays, which can work together as a tablet or show apps separately.
Samsung Mobile chief DJ Koh also recently confirmed that the Korean tech giant would release a foldable smartphone later this year.