Samsung, LG may use sapphire glass in future smartphones

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Tech rumour mill has been abuzz with reports of Apple using sapphire glass in the upcoming version of its iPhone, iPhone 6. Now, new reports suggest that Samsung and LG too appear all set to follow suit.

According to reports in Korean media, both the companies have reached out to sapphire glass manufactures and suppliers to test product samples and explore production possibilities.

Incidentally, the South Korean smartphone-makers are said to have deliberated on the possibility of using sapphire glass in 2013 too, but gave up on the idea due to high cost. Now it seems Apple’s interest in the glass has triggered a rethink.

Apple uses sapphire glass as coating for the fingerprint sensor and camera of iPhone 5S. The smartphone giant is also said to have more plans for the material in iPhone 6. It is rumoured that iPhone 6 will feature the sapphire glass coating on the whole display panel.

It is also rumoured that Apple is making just 10 million units of this panel due to high production cost; each unit is said to cost $280 to make, while the total cost of all components of iPhone 5S is $191. This high-component cost will reportedly push the final retail price of the 64GB iPhone phablet to 8000 yuan ($1,285) in China.

Due to the high production cost, sapphire glass displays are currently only used in high-end mobile devices such as the Vertu Ti.

GT Advanced Technologies has reportedly already started shipping sapphire to Apple partners in China.

Sapphire glass is said to be not only more resilient to scratches, but also thinner and lighter than the traditional glass.

In late 2013, Apple was granted a patent for a flexible sapphire displays.

Filed in: News, Technology News

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