Apple patents method for embedding sapphire displays in LiquidMetal device chassis

“The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on Tuesday issued Apple a patent describing a process in which an iPhone’s display glass — including sapphire — is integrally joined with a bezel made out of amorphous metal alloy, namely Liquidmetal,” Mikey Campbell reports for AppleInsider.

“Although the patent is over six years old, its granting comes on the heels of news that Apple has extended exclusive contract rights to use Liquidmetal in consumer electronics through 2015,” Campbell reports. “What Apple proposes is the injection of Liquidmetal around a glass or sapphire substrate. The liquid metal flows through a mold’s cavity that contains the transparent material and hardens at a predetermined rate of contraction, “grabbing” the glass and eliminating tolerance issues. Glass edges can be beveled or contain channels to enhance the joining process.”

Read more in the full article here.

“The original iPhone wasn’t even out a year when one of Apple’s engineers began his work on sealing the iPhone’s cover glass with liquid metal,” Jack Purcher reports for Patently Apple. “In 2013, this process was advanced in another patent that included Apple’s metal frame that doubles as an antenna and it was at this point where we wondered aloud if Apple’s iPhone wasn’t already using liquid metal. Today’s granted patent illustrates that the research that Apple’s engineer did on this project in 2008 predated their first agreement with Liquidmetal Technologies in 2010.”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Readers “Fred Mertz” and “Dan K.” for the heads up.]

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  1. This is how you continue to beat the Samsungs of the the world.

    Not with lawyers…but with engineers focused upon continuous improvement of products and processes.

  2. So how do I get the screen fixed when my daughter breaks it…I know its sapphire but I’ve never seen a teenager proof device.

    Sounds like this makes the iPhone unrepairable.

  3. The patent describes a sapphire panel bonded to a Liquidmetal bezel.
    What it clearly does not describe is said screen/bezel arrangement being integrated into the phone’s frame.
    Which means that the screen would still be replaceable.
    However, having the screen bonded to a Liquidmetal bezel would probably isolate it from the worst effects of corner/edge impacts, which are the ones most likely to smash the screen.
    The screen/bezel component would most likely be fixed to the frame in the same way as the current phones are.

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