The US Patent & Trademark Office has approved several patents for Apple Inc., including a possible future folding display and a smart keyboard folio for the iPad.
In 2018, the tech giant submitted a patent labeled “Single and Multi-fold Forms For Future iDevices”, relating to devices that have bendable or flexible sections. Embodiments outline a cover and display layer that could bend or fold, with the flexible material being possibly made of ceramics such as sapphire, zirconia or strengthened glass. The cover layer provides structural support on both foldable and non-foldable areas.
In 2012, Apple submitted a patent application for smart connectors and fabric-layered keyboards for their iPad devices, bringing the idea of Smart Keyboard to fruition. Notable form factors and improvements in the patent include an added trackpad and a designated space on top of the keyboard for Apple Pencil input.
Patents show rough sketches of what companies are working on, as seen at Patently Apple and can still change. We’ll just have to wait for official announcements from Apple regarding future updates and device features.