20.3-inch MacBook with foldable screen rumored to hit store shelves in 2027

Posted:
in Future Apple Hardware edited March 7

A new leak suggests Apple's only foldable with a development schedule and release is a 20.3-inch MacBook that would enter mass production in 2027.

An image generated with AI showing a large iPad-like tablet folded in half on a desk.
A generated image of a foldable MacBook concept



Apple's first foldable could be a MacBook instead of an iPad or iPhone. Save your jokes -- we already know the MacBook folds shut with hinges.

A post on X from Ming-Chi Kuo states that rumors around Apple mass producing a foldable iPhone or iPad by 2026 are not accurate. Instead, Apple's only foldable with a development scheduled is a 20.3-inch MacBook due in 2027.

Kuo's post lines up with previous reports about Apple's foldable plans. In this case, the "foldable" part of the MacBook isn't hinges but the display itself.

2025 2026 iPhone iPad20.3"2027MacBook

--
Recently, I've received many inquiries about whether Apple plans to mass-produce the

-- (Ming-Chi Kuo) (@mingchikuo)



A different leaker called Revegnus replied to state it was actually a 20.25-inch foldable. That display size was previously reported by The Elec in 2022 with a 2027 release window.

That report suggested it would fold shut into a 15.3-inch device, which is similar to existing MacBook display sizes. The top half would be a display, and the bottom half could display a software keyboard or other content.

Timelines from rumors have since shifted, with a different Elec report suggesting a foldable could arrive as soon as 2025, followed by Ross Young echoing that.

Something is going on with Apple's foldable development as another report suggested Samsung had reshuffled its organization to prioritize improving technology for Apple's foldable.

Ming-Chi Kuo tends to use placeholder names when describing future products. A 20.3-inch folding display may not be called MacBook at all. It could even be classified as an iPad if it has an all-touch surface.

This rumor is rated possible due to Ming-Chi Kuo's accuracy when dealing with the supply chain.

Time will tell if any of these rumors come true, but where there's smoke, there's fire. Apple is clearly working on folding technology, but what form it takes and when is still in question.

Rumor Score: Possible

Read on AppleInsider

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 11
    mattinozmattinoz Posts: 2,369member
    My wallet stands waiting.

    Who am i kidding I'm not going to have a wallet by 2027. 
    edited March 6 ForumPostwatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 11
    charlesncharlesn Posts: 907member
    I'm still waiting on the flat-sided Apple Watch 7 Series that numerous leakers throughout early to mid 2021 absolutely, postively, no-doubt-about-it promised we were going to get.

    But seriously... visibility about Apple's future plans is so limited that even predictions only 3-6 months out are routinely incorrect. We don't know what's coming at WWDC in June. We have no release date for the high performance variants of M3. But we can predict that Apple's going into production 3 years from now on a folding screen Macbook in a massive, 20+ inch size? Please. I"m gonna have to file this one under a new rumor rating that I call "Random Guess"
    edited March 7 watto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 11
    9secondkox29secondkox2 Posts: 2,841member
    I wouldn't buy it, but a foldable laptop makes a lot more sense than a phone. 
    ForumPostwatto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 11
    michelb76michelb76 Posts: 650member
    Seems very unlikely. Unless Apple has a totally new, unseen before, superior state of the art folding screen mechanism, that other brands do not have, that isn't as crappy as what is on the market right now. Also, indeed, what would it run? Has to be iPadOS.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 11
    omasouomasou Posts: 602member
    Ok, there's an example of a reason for a foldable screen but a 20" iPad.

    Yes, I get there are Wacoms and that there are artist that may want more real estate but do "I" really want hold and watch a 20" iPad? Probably not.

    My iPad Pro at 12" is too heavy.

    Hey Apple, let start innovating on weight not size. My current MacBook Pro is a pig, my iPhone wants to pull down my short, etc.
    edited March 7
  • Reply 6 of 11
    thttht Posts: 5,530member
    michelb76 said:
    Seems very unlikely. Unless Apple has a totally new, unseen before, superior state of the art folding screen mechanism, that other brands do not have, that isn't as crappy as what is on the market right now. Also, indeed, what would it run? Has to be iPadOS.
    The rumor provides a date of 2027. That basically tells you that product is not real and all Apple is doing is prototyping. Will it make it out of prototyping stage? Who knows. 99% of prototypes don't ship.

    I do think a folding display laptop is very intriguing form factor, much more so than a folding display phone. I very rarely use my MBP16 as a "laptop". 99% of the time, I either have it docked with a external display on my desk at work or docked to my external display on my desk at home. I use it with the lid open and the 16" display is used with my 27" display on the desk. Back and forth it goes from desk to desk.

    A 20" display "laptop" gives me even more display area, and that sounds very beneficial. It could eliminate the need for an external monitor all together for some people. Front camera placement could be an issue. Apple should just add 2 or 3 clusters of camera/IR sensors and just call it a day.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 11
    thttht Posts: 5,530member

    omasou said:
    Ok, there's an example of a reason for a foldable screen but a 20" iPad.

    Yes, I get there are Wacoms and that there are artist that may want more real estate but do "I" really want hold and watch a 20" iPad? Probably not.

    My iPad Pro at 12" is too heavy.

    Hey Apple, let start innovating on weight not size. My current MacBook Pro is a pig, my iPhone wants to pull down my short, etc.
    If the rumors of 5mm thin iPad Pros are true, it may represent a 15% decrease in weight. I hope it is true. A 13" iPad Pro at 1.3 lb or 0.58 kg sounds great.

    However, it really needs a true blue runtime of 10 hrs while web browsing. Really should be 18 hours to be "worry free". Then, it needs to be stiff enough not to bend. So I kind of doubt a 15% volume decrease will represent a 15% decrease in weight. We will see. Looking forward to getting a iPP13 myself.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 11
    xyzzy-xxxxyzzy-xxx Posts: 188member
    I don't think that I will like a foldable MacBook (or iPhone or iPad) – but maybe I am wrong...
    VictorMortimerwatto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 11
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 15,376moderator
    xyzzy-xxx said:
    I don't think that I will like a foldable MacBook (or iPhone or iPad) – but maybe I am wrong...
    Having a 20" display would be good, this is a 17" Asus foldable:



    The huge downside is the very noticeable crease down the middle. If they can make a Macbook as a headless base with a large foldable display without a crease, that would be a nice option.

    They might not need foldables, they could just make wireless displays e.g sell a smaller 14-16" ($499) portable wireless display for carrying with the laptop and a larger 20" ($999) model. People who only use a laptop to go between home and work might not buy either and get the headless laptop on its own.
    edited March 8 watto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 11
    mattinozmattinoz Posts: 2,369member
    michelb76 said:
    Seems very unlikely. Unless Apple has a totally new, unseen before, superior state of the art folding screen mechanism, that other brands do not have, that isn't as crappy as what is on the market right now. Also, indeed, what would it run? Has to be iPadOS.
    There have been commercially available touch screen converted macs for 20+ years. 

    If it is rumoured to be a mac then it will run macOS
    edited March 8 watto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 11
    omasou said:
    Ok, there's an example of a reason for a foldable screen but a 20" iPad.

    Yes, I get there are Wacoms and that there are artist that may want more real estate but do "I" really want hold and watch a 20" iPad? Probably not.

    My iPad Pro at 12" is too heavy.

    Hey Apple, let start innovating on weight not size. My current MacBook Pro is a pig, my iPhone wants to pull down my short, etc.

    How about NO.

    You want lighter, get the Air.  I'd rather have heavier, like a 18" MacBook Pro with a bigger (and hot swappable) battery and upgradeable RAM and storage.  Oh, and no stupid notch in the screen.

    I'd be absolutely fine if it gains a pound or two over the 16".
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