RUMOR: New MacBooks to be built with Liquidmetal; MacBook Pro and Air lines to merge

“There are several interesting reports that suggest that the new MacBook Pro 2012 will be built with Liquidmetal (LQMT),” NVO News reports. “Reports also suggest that Macbook Pro and MacBook Air may be combined.”

“Liquidmetal is more solid, though it is lighter and scratch-resistant than the existing aluminum unibody,” NVO News reports. “The Cupertino based tech giant Apple is reported to have an exclusive agreement with Liquidmetal Technologies to use the material since 2010. But so far its usage has remained negligible and the only thing Apple has produced with this material is a SIM ejection tool.”

NVO News reports, “A leading Apple blog suggests that the forthcoming MacBook Pro will come loaded with Intel’s third generation Ivy Bridge chips and USB 3.0 ports. The first thing is almost predictable and it is expected that MacBook Pro will be the first device to hit stores with the Ivy Bridge microprocessor, which Intel has officially announced a few days back. But we need to wait a bit more to allow things to become clearer regarding speculations about Liquidmetal.”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews readers too numerous to mention individually for the heads up.]

Related articles:
RUMOR: Apple’s new MacBook Pro, Air to be made of Liquidmetal – April 24, 2012
A Liquidmetal iPhone 5: What’s in it for You – April 23, 2012
Apple’s next-gen iPhone may be baptized in Liquidmetal – April 20, 2012
Ceramics, Liquidmetal and Magic Glass, what could Apple’s iPhone 5 tempt us with next? – April 20, 2012
Apple’s iPhone 5 made of metallic glass reportedly arrives this October – April 20, 2012
Apple’s next-gen iPhone: Thinner, lighter, faster – and poured? – April 19, 2012
How Liquidmetal could give the next iPhone its special swagger – April 19, 2012
Apple’s next-gen iPhone main body to shift from Gorilla Glass to Liquidmetal, say industry sources – April 18, 2012
Liquidmetal Technologies filing outlines its multimillion dollar agreement with Apple – March 31, 2012
Apple granted its first Liquidmetal patent – January 5, 2011
Apple patent application describes scratch-resistant stainless steel – October 29, 2010
Join the dots on six future Apple technologies – September 22, 2010
Apple already using Liquidmetal in their… – August 17, 2010
Inventor says Liquidmetal may be used for new iPhone antenna – August 13, 2010
Apple already uses Liquidmetal; Guess which product and win a Magic Trackpad – August 13, 2010
How will Apple use their exclusive Liquidmetal alloy? – August 12, 2010
Apple’s exclusive Liquidmetal pact could see future Apple products encased in metallic glass – August 11, 2010
Apple inks deal for exclusive rights to custom, super-durable metal alloy – August 09, 2010


  1. It is a forgone conclusion that advanced materials like metallic glasses, “liquidmetal”, will be used in Apple’s products.

    Apple executed a coup against all PC makers when it secured the LiquidMetal exclusive license for consumer electronics and few people talked about it. It signalled the start of injection molded metals on a large scale.

    Why? It is all about reducing the amount of tools, time and finishing needed to get a HIGH QUALITY part, in this case, for housings that have rough service. Scratch resistance, toughness, lower density than aluminum and higher stiffness make metallic glasses attractive in so many ways.

    Now, does anyone who still doubts Apple see why Apple is and has been planning and executing for products 5 and 10 years ahead.

    The rest of the PC industry is mostly “Carbon Copy Cloners” (pardon me Mike Bombich: ), but it was too good to pass up).

    As yet I do not see a PC company with the dedication and drive and discipline of Apple to succeed. In a way that is sad, but Apple is executing at warp speed such that they are their OWN BEST COMPETITION.

    We consumers get the benefit.

    1. “lower density than aluminum”

      Liquidmetal’s density is HIGHER than aluminum. It’s not the density that’s important, it’s the overall weight, which should be less, in spite of a higher density, due to less material needed because of higher strength.

      1. i think he means – at lower densities the strength if Liquid metals is stronger – so parts can be moulded slimmer and yet still have a over all cheaper and more durable product.

        And if i drop my AIrBook it will bounce right back up to me…
        Like a AirBook should.

        1. That is *not* a lower density, C3PO. Stick to human/cyborg relations! 😉

          The weight reduction results from using a reduced amount (volume) of a higher density alloy with superior mechanical properties. That does not always work – for instance, there may be a minimum practical thickness (gauge) of the stronger/tougher material that will prevent the weight savings. In addition, hardpoints are needed for mounting hinges, accepting fasteners, etc., and there may be issues with fatigue or other considerations that actually make the new material less mass effective in those areas.

          Some people are worried about the higher cost of LM versus aluminum. I suspect that near net casting of LM (relative to milling from billet aluminum blocks) will help to offset the higher bulk cost of the LM material. Just cast the material, finish machine the critical mating interfaces, then drill and tap for threaded fasteners. Near net casting results in less waste to clean up and recycle, and may also help to reduce parts count.

          In addition to having an exclusive license for LM, Apple is probably the only company with the vision, motivation, knowledge, assets and economy of scale to make its use economically feasible at this point.

          1. a sorry KingMoi,

            resistance to scratches and a lighter yet stronger material do interest me far more

            as a consumer, I careless about the science, the chemistry and compounds used and the density and thermo qualities of this Liquid metal – but yes all is fascinating so I leave that to you.

          2. Aluminum can be extruded and thus also be moulded from pouring hot liquid into casts… the result may not be desirable… but why has Apple chosen to mill lathe or route-out/drill Aluminum?

            I am just wondering KingMoi… as you seem to have a excellent grasp on processes.

            1. Milled aluminum was use to now because it is a known process with predictable qualities that have been developed for many decades meaning…consistent quality.

              Injection molded liquid metal alloys are so new they are in the early stages of commercialization. Lots of unknowns had to be identified and a consistent product proven out.

              No doubt Apple has spent a lot of money just modifying and testing and modifying the exact liquid metal alloy, molding machines and tools and the molding processes to get to the point of a reliable, quality end product.

          3. Pure Aluminum density at 800°C is 2.35 g/cm3 cubed
            AI-319 is about 2.45 g/cm cubed at 800°C.

            Apples Amorphous Alloy Composition, is material that can be cast precisely, with little or no need for machining. The material’s amorphous, non-crystalline structure makes it harder than alloys of titanium or aluminum.

            SanDisk “Cruzer Titanium” USB flash drives was made of LiquidMetal.

            “The alloys have relatively low softening temperatures, allowing casting of complicated shapes without need of finishing.” – wiki

            “The low free volume also results in low shrinkage during cooling. For all of these reasons, Liquidmetal can be formed into complex shapes using processes similar to thermoplastics,[2] which makes Liquidmetal a potential replacement for many applications where plastics would normally be used.” – wiki

            “The material is also susceptible to metal fatigue with crack growth; a two-phase composite structure with amorphous matrix and a ductile dendritic crystalline-phase reinforcement, or a metal matrix composite reinforced with fibers of other material can reduce or eliminate this disadvantage” – wiki

            “The ability to be cast and molded, combined with high wear resistance, has also led to Liquidmetal being used as a replacement for plastics in some applications.[citation needed] It has been used on the casing of late-model SanDisk “Cruzer Titanium” USB flash drives as well as their Sansa line of flash-based MP3 player, and casings of some mobile phones, like the luxury Vertu products, and other toughened consumer electronics.[citation needed] Liquidmetal has also notably been used for making the SIM ejector tool of some iPhone 3Gs made by Apple Inc., shipped in the US. This was done by Apple as an exercise to test the viability of usage of the metal.[8]” – wiki

    2. This is why I think Steve wanted Cook at the head. The vision is created already. The heads of each area are more than prepared to take us from here to there. What Apple needs now is someone to take the plans and make the products happen, worldwide, in a flawless manner. That’s Cook.

      1. Why?

        Although MacBook is a bigger, I think starting off with the notebook is more reasonable and safer. They produce way too many iPhone to risk manufacturing it with liquid metal.

  2. Isn’t the primary metal in Liquidmetal platinum?

    It costs more than gold.

    I have no doubts Apple will figure out a way of using it in many of its products, but to think that entire CASES will be made of this precious metal seems ludicrous.

    Am I missing something? Who is going to pay thousands of extra dollars for products made with these cases?

    1. @trendtracker

      Before you get your shorts in a bunch, wait for an answer to your question “Isn’t the primary metal in Liquidmetal platinum?”

      the answer is no.

      And the comment about making entire cases out of the metal being ludicrous reminds me of the statement by the US Patent Office in 1899 “everything that has been invented, has been already”

      check out the liquid metal website and videos, do some more reading and research and then report back to us with some facts and perhaps jubilant hysteria about this incredible process instead of fear, uncertainty and doubt.

      I am not saying you are wrong about making an entire case out of it but you have no basis for saying so.

      time for some reading and research.

      1. Can you tell me how much the various liquidmetal alloys cost?

        That’s something their website will not reveal and it’s the primary point of my discussion.

        My only mistake was saying it was the primary metal. I did not know that there are many different liquid metal alloys. Many of them DO have platinum as one of their primary components and, as far as I can tell, it is used in most if not all of their alloys.

        I’m willing to be taught if you have more information, otherwise I’ll stick to my original assessment. Using it in quantity is cost prohibitive and thus ludicrous.

        I don’t fear the product but I do have concerns about its costs.

    2. There are a good number of search engines out there and you could have taken a few seconds before letting the world know how far you are away from your name. Some people keep their mouths shut to avoid being thought of as a fool, others open it and remove all doubt.

    3. Trendtracker – LiquidMetal is the trend BECAUSE…

      Liquidmetal have greater strength then the best steels made today.
      Compare it’s strength to weight ratio; LiquidMetals also beat even the best lightweight material like titanium and even aluminium.

      PLUS – here is the answer for you TRENDTRACKER
      Liquidmetal are less expensive.

      1. I know WHY LiquidMetal is a good product, but even the wikipedia reference you’re using in your reply is talking about FUTURE LiquidMetal alloy possibilities.

        In the present, liquid metal alloys are way more expensive in quantity than most seem to realize. That’s the reason I posted in the first place.

        Does anybody here have real information on costs or are you just guessing?

  3. Yeah, wonder when these “rumored” updates will take place? I stupidly dropped my backup 2008 WhiteBook last night for the first time ever and think I toasted the HDD. Just glad it wasn’t my main MBP from last year. Depending on what the new ones look like (and drive space) I could pick one up and make my 2011 MBP my backup and retire the WhiteBook, after I spend all day tomorrow installing a new drive and reinstalling from Time Machine.

    1. replacing the hard drive will take all of 3 minutes. If you had a Carbon Copy Cloner backup of your drive, restoring would take you about an hour. Time machine – well, it’ll get your stuff restored but it’ll definitely take a while. Sorry to hear bout the bounce. That stinks.

      1. Yeah, I’ve modified the drive in the WhiteBook a number of times (320GB to 500GB to 750GB) so I’ve gotten pretty good at it. I just upgraded to Lion a few weeks back and have a CCC version of the previous Snow Leopard version but only a TM version of the latest Lion build. I’ll throw in a 1TB drive to match my MBP and then just let TM do it’s agonizingly slow restore.

        As for the new MBPs, I just want to see what the new form factor looks like and hope they come sooner rather than later. They’ve come a long way from my first TiBook in 2002.

      1. We eventually may get a MacBook with a housing so durable, we actually replace the “insides” when it is time to upgrade.

        LCDs are already so reliable that they outlast everything else.

        The motherboard in a LiquidMetal case could be set up to be easy to replace, just as it is now for the hard drive and battery.

        1. Lets hope you are right…

          Liquidmetal was first used in golf clubs.

          It was cleverly decide to put LiquidMetal on the face of the club (to contact with the ball) due to the materials highly elastic quality. A ball could be driven further. However, the prototypes would shattered like glass after less than 40 whacks.

          LiquidMetal also is susceptible to metal fatigue. It will crack.
          So, the structure requires a second composite is required to reinforced the metal compound to reduce or eliminate this disadvantage.

          Fortunately, new processes of casting the material and alloy mixture adjustments have advanced and so you might me right BoC. One day the insides only need to be upgraded.

  4. A leading Apple blog suggests blahblahblah with Intel’s third generation Ivy Bridge chips and USB 3.0 ports

    I personally don’t see the point in bothering with USB 3. There are no killer devices that require USB 3. Meanwhile, Thunderbolt buries USB 3 for speed and functionality.

    But as we know, the market drives what sells, be it trash or treasure, Windows boxes or Macs. 😉

    1. I’d happily take a USB 3 port upgrade as I have several cheap external drives that would benefit. While Thunderbolt may ‘bury’ it technically, its problem for me is that I have yet to see a reasonably priced Thunderbolt anything. Even an inexpensive port adapter to Firewire 800; etc. would be welcome. Everything I see for TB at this point is premium priced and of limited interest to me. I fear it may remain so as long as the adoption rate is low, which is unfortunate as the tech is superior.

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.