Apple that has for long steered clear of foldables may be joining the segment soon. Earlier reports have shed light about a foldable iPad, instead of a foldable iPhone, but these were mainly guesses by noted analysts. Turns out, there is now some more evidence on that front with a source claiming that a foldable iPad will hit production next year and even possibly go on sale next year. Samsung may have had a nice head start with foldables over the past several years, but Apple seems to be targeting a different segment entirely going by the latest data.

More smartphone manufacturers have gradually started showing interest in the foldable smartphone category lately after Samsung’s dominance over the same many years. Samsung has been the only smartphone brand to announce and launch its foldable lineup in India year after year. It’s only over the end of last year and earlier this year, where more players like Motorola and Oppo have entered this space, with OnePlus being the only brand to launch a full-sized premium horizontal foldable after Tecno’s Phantom V Fold debuted earlier this year. According to a report by DigiTimes, Apple is also readying its suppliers and lining up for the launch of its first iPad foldable.

Its supply chain sources claim that small-scale production of this iPad foldable could begin by the end of 2024, as per the report. While Apple seems clear that it wants to be a part of the foldables race, it has yet to submit its design for the same. The source also claims that Apple will first experiment with bigger devices like the iPad before it applies similar tech to iPhones.

As per the publication’s sources, Apple’s goal is to achieve a cost-effective production by using a simpler design. The source also claims that Apple chose the iPad over the iPhone because iPadOS is similar to the iPhone’s iOS operating system. Another reason for Apple choosing the iPad for its first foldable is down to risks in the sense that the iPad still forms a smaller chunk of Apple’s revenues compared to a product as important as the iPhone.

Meanwhile, an earlier report by analyst Ming-Chi Kuo hinted that Apple’s foldable iPad would use a carbon-fiber kickstand and that it would arrive in 2024. The new updates corroborate the older news. Kuo back in January also mentioned that Apple would shift to this foldable iPad as Apple’s tablet shipments decline even further (by 10-15 percent) this year.

Affiliate links may be automatically generated – see our ethics statement for details.

Catch the latest from the Consumer Electronics Show on Gadgets 360, at our CES 2024 hub.