iPhone “Fold”: Apple must comply with certain production constraints

While Apple really does not seem determined to release a foldable smartphone, some are wondering about the materials that the firm could use. Indeed, Cupertino’s wish would be above all to avoid the very marked crease that we have been able to observe on certain models of foldable smartphones (of a South Korean brand for example).

According to The ElectricApple would put pressure on its screen supplierssuch as LG and Samsung Display, so that they develop hybrid OLED panels. These would use a plastic substrate, not glass like conventional rigid OLED panels. This element would, moreover, be accompanied by additional protection.

But the problem would come mainly from the production process. Indeed, the polymer varnishes are heated and deposited in liquid form on top of the glass substrate, which is then removed by lasers, to keep only the solidified polymer part (the flexible component). But during this operation, some parts may be deformed by the heat.

To avoid this problem, Samsung Display and LG are working on a hybrid solution with an ultra-thin 2 mm glass substrate – instead of the usual 5 mm – which would not be removed and which would be easier to bend. For the moment, such a technique is still under development, and it will be necessary to wait a few years before seeing the fold on an iPhone screen or, more probably, an iPad.

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