The iPad mini isn’t really that mini when you think about it. With an 8.3in screen, it’s not that much more compact than the 10.9in iPad Air. But make it any smaller and it’s suddenly a glorified 6.9in iPhone 15 Pro Max.
So how do you make a tablet smaller without it getting mistaken for a (very chunky) phone? You make it foldable. And according to a new report on Korean site The Elec, this is exactly what Apple may be planning for 2026 or 2027.
The site says that this foldable would pack a 7in or 8in screen, and would replace the current iPad mini. But the report then casts doubt on this, highlighting that Apple is also experimenting with an OLED iPad mini so it might be something completely different.
One possibility is that rather than just a tablet that folds in half, Apple is instead working on a Galaxy Fold-style iPhone, with a normal screen on the outside that unfolds to a larger canvas in the middle.
If that’s the case, 2027 feels more likely from a purely symbolic perspective. That will mark the 20th anniversary of the iPhone, and Apple might like to do something big and bold — assuming we’re not all wearing Vision Pro headsets 24 hours a day by then. On the ten-year mark, Apple adopted OLED and killed the Home button for the iPhone X, so something dramatic isn’t out of the question.
Either way, it doesn’t look like Apple will be happy with just a small foldable tablet. The site adds that it’s also working on a giant 20.25in foldable for people who like to carry tablets the size of small TVs around with them, but it’s “expected to be later” than the aforementioned smaller model.
All of this is a long way into the future, of course, which means we’re likely looking at a more conventional set of iPads this year. That will start with an all-new OLED iPad Pro and larger-than-ever iPad Air in the next few months.
Photo: James Yarema/Unsplash