Future Superphones May Use Sapphire in Place of Gorilla Glass
Samsung unveiled previously that its new flagship, the Galaxy S4, will be world’s first smartphone protected by the Corning Gorilla Glass 3. However, there are already speculations that we will soon be getting a new type of protective product with much improved toughness. The material has been developed for military uses as transparent armor and it will arrive in consumer electronics products, specifically smartphones.
Sapphire is a transparent aluminum oxide, which is more scratch resistant and about three times tougher than current durable glasses. Its toughness characteristics are nearly comparable to diamonds, but at much cheaper price. Sapphire’s relativey laffordable price and ruggedness make the material an ideal candidate for future high-end smartphones. However, adding a layer of sapphire on the smartphone display will cost manufacturers $30 apiece, while the Corning Gorilla Glass is only about $3. Obviously, Corning won’t rest idle and it will develop new products aimed to be more competitive than sapphire.