Fans of foldable phones have plenty to look forward to over the coming months: the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 and Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 are due to be launched in the next few weeks, we might well see a Google Pixel Fold in the near future, and now it looks as though a Vivo foldable will turn up later in the year too.
That's according to the well-known and usually accurate tipster Ice Universe, who says that we'll see the Vivo Nex Fold before 2021 is over. The same source also says that the more conventional Vivo Nex 5 smartphone won't be launched this year.
Weighing in on the same Twitter thread, display analyst Ross Young – someone else who has a good track record when it comes to inside information – says that the Nex Fold won't appear until January 2022. He adds that it's going to be the largest foldable of its type yet in terms of its panel size.
Whether it's the end of 2021 or the start of 2022, that narrows down the timeframe for when we can expect the Vivo Nex Fold to make an appearance. It's also possible that the phone will be announced in 2021 before going on sale in 2022, or that the launch might be staggered based on region.
The prediction that the Vivo Nex Fold will have the biggest panel yet for this form factor is an interesting one: that means that it would be larger than the current record holder, the Xiaomi Mi Mix Fold, which has an 8.01-inch display. The Huawei Mate X2 isn't far behind with an 8-inch screen.
We're definitely getting into tablet territory if the Vivo Nex Fold comes with an even larger panel, which is really part of the point of foldable phones – the advantages of a tablet screen in a device that you can still fit in your pocket (just about). The current iPad Mini, for example, has a 7.9-inch display.
Unfortunately we don't have too many other details about the Vivo Nex Fold at this stage, but we're sure that more will emerge in the coming months. Expect the internal specs to be towards the premium end of the scale, with a relatively high price tag to match.
For the time being, all eyes are on what Samsung is going to do with its next foldables. The Galaxy Z Flip 3 (with a rumored screen size of 6.7 inches) and the Galaxy Z Fold 3 (7.5 inches) are widely expected to arrive in August, alongside a couple of Galaxy smartwatches and the Galaxy Buds 2.