Apple Sapphire display patent:
We all saw the few leaks concentrating on how Apple is aiming to go for Sapphire displays for this year's iPhone 6 models. U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has just awarded Apple Sapphire display patent to embed sapphire glass display in the LiquidMetal chassis.
While the patent is reportedly over six years old, the certification has just come before the release of next gen iPhone. This strongly indicates that Apple is serious about blending sapphire display as the company extended its contract with LiquidMetal Technologies too until February 2015.
This technology may not be integrated in the iPhone 6 4.7-inch model; but it is highly rumored to be used in the larger 5.5" Apple iPhone that was reported to be launched later in the year. "In supply chain analyst circles there is chatter that Apple no longer uses Corning’s Gorilla Glass for its iPhone screens, and hasn’t for some time now. But it still makes them out of glass. Expanding sapphire production and buying its own plant indicate a massive interest in the crystalline material by Apple".
This USPTO patent will allow Apple to inject LiquidMetal materials over the Sapphire glass. Traditionally, Apple has bound displays to the plastic chassis using a rubber gasket for durability. This latest technique will make the glass a part of the bezel forming an integrated display unit. The rubberized gasket will still be used but will be limited to the edges of the glass.
Earlier rumors also suggested that while Sapphire would make the next gen iPhone both lighter and durable, it is costing Apple $280 a piece (much higher than the usual cost). Reports had also indicated that Apple would only produce 10 million units due to the aforementioned cost hike.
- Source: AppleInsider