“Apple’s investment in Liquidemtal technology from 2010 may finally materialize in the next-generation iPhone or iPad, according to a new job posting on Apple.com,” Filip Truta reports for Softpedia.
“Apple is seeking a Mechanical Engineer with a ‘broad understanding of materials and manufacturing process such as joining (press lamination, gluing, heat staking),’ according to the company’s web site,” Truta reports. “The new recruit needs to have understanding of part creation processes, such as ‘CNC milling/turning, injection molding, stamping, MIM, die casting, extrusion and sheet forming etc.'”
Truta reports, “The space-age Liquidmetal material is manipulated using these exact processes. The job advert doesn’t make this a certainty, but Apple could finally be ready to deliver the Liquidmetal iPhone this year.”
Read more in the full article here.
[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Brawndo Drinker” for the heads up.]
They’re kidding right? almost every metal is being manipulated that way.
Exactly; Apple develops its own technology of manufacturing processes for many years, and they included all of process listed before LM was even licensed.
As always, it should be noted that it would be great if the enclosure/unibody of a phone could be done from LM, but it is very pricey comparing to aluminium alloy that Apple buys in gigantic scales for a really good price.
More Liquidmetal wet dreams.
Liquid metal is actually glass. That is why they want someone specifically who can create the manufacturing processes to machine and mould this new substance.
Not quite; LM is not a glass, it is amorphous alloy. Both glass and LM share the quality of being amorphous in molecular structure, but no other qualities whatsoever (LM is not transparent, and it is not brittle, et cetera).
Just a thought. Glass is not really brittle. It is so strong that it has a very straight stress strain relationship. Right up to the point where it yields, glass acts like strengthened metal.
However, that yielding ability allows metal to deform before it breaks (which actually hardens it at that point.
Just a thought.
The glass *is* brittle. There is no way you could drop an sheet of alloy and it would fall apart unless it is deeply frozen almost to like minus 273 Celsius, while the glass just loves to brittle under normal temperatures. However, the hardness of material is different quality, and glass might be much harder than metal alloy: even regular glass is much harder to scratch comparing to your regular metal.
Not all glass is clear or brittle. From Wikipedia:
Liquidmetal alloys contain atoms of significantly different sizes. They form a dense mix with low free volume. Unlike crystalline metals, there is no obvious melting point at which viscosity drops suddenly. Vitreloy behaves more like other glasses, in that its viscosity drops gradually with increased temperature. At high temperature, it behaves in a plastic manner, allowing the mechanical properties to be controlled relatively easily during casting. The viscosity prevents the atoms moving enough to form an ordered lattice, so the material retains its amorphous properties even after being heat-formed.
Of course, not; I never said that all glass is brittle. You can make certain chemicals mixed it to get it less brittle. Overall, how much brittle amorphous material gets depends on the qualities of molecules and the powers between them. As I wrote above, glass is normally brittle under normal temperatures, and LM will go brittle only in deeply frozen state. Both are amorphous, but basically all of their qualities, besides being amorphous, are drastically different.
Thanks for clearing that up.
Potentially and Confirmed are two words that should never be used in a story about a future Apple product.
If this job ad is targeted for Liquidmetal product development, then you shouldn’t expect any LM-based products from Apple for a year or two. You don’t hire someone, then pop out a product in volume in a few months.
My opinion is that Apple has had some LM expertise in house for the last few years and may be looking to beef up its design and manufacturing staff. However, if any LM products are released this year by Apple, they were already in the pipeline and heading into manufacturing before this ad was posted.
Actually it seems quite common from memory for Apple to post such a job application at and around the time they launch something relevant to it. Seems strange I admit but I suspect that once some technology comes to market you need extra expertise to nurture it within the marketplace rather than development for it.
DO NOT try to infer what Apple’s doing from the job postings. They hire people for all kinds of engineering fields all the time.
iPhone 6. This year? He’s out of his tiny little mind if he imagines that this year’s iPhone release will be a new form-factor, instead of an iteration of the existing form-factor, just like all the previous iPhones, and that Apple would be advertising for an engineer for such a significant material development, so close to the likely release date. It’ll require at least the rest of this year just to get the process up to speed.
The very earliest this could happen would be next autumn, probably not until 2015.
Yes, Apple always does exactly what you expect them to. 🙂
My money’s on an LQMT iWatch first.
Of course, LQMT will be up two cents tomorrow, almost 25 percent!! 😎
“Apple is seeking a Mechanical Engineer with a ‘broad understanding of materials and manufacturing process such as press lamination, gluing, heat staking CNC milling/turning, injection molding, stamping, MIM, die casting, extrusion and sheet forming etc.
This is a list of manufacturing processes used for plastic and metal parts, that’s all you can say for sure. It mentions heat staking, a process used with plastic parts. You heat something up (like a screw boss) and then while it’s hot you push it into place in a plastic part. The plastic melts around it and when it cools the part is locked into the plastic. You can’t melt something into a metal part.
“You can’t melt something into a metal part.”
Actually this is the very property LM is known for. From what i’ve read, it seems the goal is to fuse the screen and the body into a seamless part.
oh just release at goddamn phone with a non-glass casing and a bigger screen already!!!!!!!
Which they did with the aluminum unibody 4 inch screen iPhone 5. Have you been living under a rock for the past year?
Well…my Adnroid Jellybean LG Spectrum 2 “rocks”…if that’s what you mean.???…so yeah…But uuuhhh…if an extra row of icons is all you require then…well…to each his phone–and that means you won’t be buying a new iphone if they release an EVEN bigger normal sized screen for people who don’t wear skinny jeans but “regular dude” jeans riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiighht?!?!?
Anyway I have more votes than you so BOOOOMM!! I win
Apple should have hired this person three years ago.
Says he who is oh so knowledgable about Apple production processes and schedules.
These stories are getting fucking stupid.
Apple always hire such skilled people. No wonder the unemployment never goes down.
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Until they improve on the chassis, I will be avoiding the new iphones. I liked the 4S’s Stainless Steel frame but the glass back was just dumb. As is the ridiculously soft Aluminum of Both the HTC and the Apple. If Apple would have at least made the iphone 5 with Stainless Steel sides and back and added some sort of edge protection for the screen, yes it would be heavier, but at least it would be a phone we could use without a case.
For most of us, the need to protect our investment from drops and scratches with some sort of (bulk adding) case tends to make matters of size, weight and beautifully crafted materials pointless!