Apple just procured enough Sapphire Crystal furnaces to make 100-200 million 5-inch iPhone displays

“Last year, Apple and GT Advanced struck a deal to open and operate a manufacturing facility in Mesa, Arizona related to sapphire crystal components,” Mark Gurman reports or 9to5Mac.

“Earlier this year, we learned that Apple is ‘aggressively’ pushing to make the facility operational by February 2014 and that the building would produce a ‘critical’ and ‘new’ sub-component for future Apple devices,” Gurman reports. “Due to the vagueness and secrecy surrounding Apple and GT Advanced’s plans, there has been little to no confirmation regarding what exactly the partnership will yield for future Apple products.”

Gurman reports, “But, thanks to new documents and information that we have uncovered with help of analyst Matt Margolis, we have a clearer picture of Apple’s plans… As we’ve previously noted, sapphire crystal displays would make the iPhone’s screen much stronger and scratch resistant.”

Tons more in the full article – highly recommended – here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Jeff L.” for the heads up.]

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Apple makes at least 100 prototype next-generation iPhone units with sapphire-covered displays – January 24, 2014
Apple patent application details uses for synthetic sapphire glass – January 23, 2014
Apple partner GT Advanced recruiting for Jobs at Arizona sapphire plant – January 21, 2014
Apple patent application reveals sapphire flexible transparent display devices created with Liquidmetal – December 19, 2013
iPhone 6 rumors: Curved display, Liquidmetal, sapphire glass, and more – December 11, 2013
Apple spends over half a billion dollars on rumored iPhone 6 sapphire glass feature – November 29, 2013
Arizona OKs tax break for Apple sapphire glass plant – November 20, 2013
Incentives to lure Apple’s sapphire glass plant to Arizona revealed – November 19, 2013
Analyst: Sapphire likely to be used in new small form factor Apple device (Think iWatch) – November 8, 2013
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Apple’s iPhone 6 could feature unmatched sapphire glass display – November 7, 2013
Why Apple’s new sapphire manufacturing agreement is a big deal – November 7, 2013
GT Advanced Technologies spikes on sapphire deal with Apple – November 5, 2013
Apple expands ‘Made in USA’ efforts with sapphire glass factory in Arizona, creating over 2,000 jobs – November 4, 2013
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Corning’s Gorilla Glass vs. sapphire for mobile touch displays – May 28, 2013
Apple’s next iPhone screen could be made of Sapphire – May 2, 2013
Steve Jobs, steel balls and Corning’s Gorilla Glass (with video) – January 11, 2013


      1. Don’t know if they will or will not yet. Let’s see the plants go up first in reality. Can’t see any economic advantage of using sapphire glass.

        Expensive manufacturing process of heating aluminium oxide (Al3O2) to extremely high temperature in order to make molten liquid for pouring & forming requiring high power consumption. GG3 is ion doped glass. Cheaper to manufacture by a factor of 10.

      2. Poor form, right nut. these are unsubstantiated rumors. Nobody knows what Apple has planned. The glass could be used for the next generation of MacBook touch pads for all you know.

        BLN states facts, why do you feel the need for the antisocial fact-free snipe back? Intelligent people will side with the person with objective facts every time — grow up and maybe the adults will allow you to their table.

        1. All comments are on unsubstantiated evidence so not sure why you pick on one rather than another contributor or would it simply be best to have tumbleweed around here. Plus real time specs of a finished product are better than speculated ones for an imaginary product if we want to go down that path. They certainly aren’t facts.

        2. MOH and stress fracture are rather objective tests… I call the results of those tests facts. No value in speculating where Apple intends to use the material, but very valuable to discuss the merits and drawbacks of each material.

        3. Hey MIke,

          You obviously missed the previous post where BLN was adamant that Apple will never use Sapphire glass with absolutely no proof whatsoever and was insulting people for not agreeing with him.

    1. Not necessary; Apple has patent about coupling superthin layer of sapphire glass over usual glass. This would make incredible scratch resistance and yet mitigate (in significant degree) brittleness of sappire.

      1. To elaborate, last September the US Patent and Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals their intention to add a sapphire laminate to future iDevices, to provide a stronger glass that is scratch resistant.

        Apple says that the use of a sapphire outer surface with a glass inner surface for the display may be used in future iDevices where the two sapphire surfaces are laminated together with the glass providing support for the display and the sapphire providing scratch resistance and durability advantages.

        In other words, a permanent, unscratchable screen protector.

        See patent # 20130236699 on the site.

    2. But I agree that the linked article is blatantly wrong when it states “sapphire crystal displays would make the iPhone’s screen much stronger and scratch resistant” — sapphire per se, on its own would make screen much weaker as it more brittle than (Gorilla) glass. But for that Apple will use layers patent.

  1. Hmmmm, 5″ iPhone, Sapphire Crystal/glass laminate, Liquidmetal frame…
    Add 10Mp camera and 128Gb of storage, along with A8 processor, and 2Gb of RAM, and there sits my perfect phone. Yum!

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