The authors of the Chinese-language YouTube channel Aesthetics of Technology set out to make a foldable iPhone modeled after the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip. It took them about 300 days to implement the idea, but the result is impressive: a working device containing many original components. The authors named their project iPhone V.
The project’s authors decided from the start to use the original iPhone display, but it took a lot of work to remove hard parts from it to make the screen flexible. The OLED matrix in the iPhone itself can bend, but other elements of the screen are not designed for this, but enthusiasts managed to solve this problem.
Next, a new flexible cable was connected to the display which, unlike the original, does not fail when bent. Hinges had to be used by third party suppliers. The design of the Galaxy Z Flip didn’t fit – it bends the screen too much, but the design of the new Motorola Razr turned out to be successful, leaving a gap of almost 8 mm between the display halves. Another challenge was the layout of the iPhone parts – they had to fit in two doors and sacrifice a wireless charging module and battery, which had to be replaced with a small 1000mAh battery.
Finally, when the foldable design itself demonstrated its overall performance, the project authors realized that the flexible design of the smartphone should also be reflected in the user interface. As a workaround, an unofficial add-on for iOS was chosen that splits the screen and allows two applications to be displayed at the same time. Of course, to use it, I had to use jailbroken iOS.