Apple’s future iPhones, MacBooks could have mirror finishes or be polished with diamonds

“Apple has patented some super-strong, translucent finishes for housing electronic devices, building on speculation that an upcoming iPhone will have a reflective finish,” Anita Balakrishnan reports for CNBC. “An Apple patent application published on Tuesday depicts an ‘optically reflective layer,’ creating a metallic-looking housing for a laptop or phone.”

“According to the patent, a reflective layer would be combined with the surface of a translucent layer, ‘wherein the metal flakes provide multiple light reflective surfaces such that the composite structure has an appearance of an anodized metal,'” Balakrishnan reports. “The finished product makes the casing appear smooth and continuous, rather than being broken up by antennas or sensors, because the material doesn’t interfere with electronic signals.”

“A separate patent application, published in March, shows a smooth, matte ceramic finish for what looks like an iPhone. The patent describes a ceramic surface made from materials including zirconia or sapphire and potentially transparent, blasted at high pressure with a harder substance, such as diamond or sapphire,” Balakrishnan reports. “Apple has been working on ceramic phone chassis since at least 2006, patents show, but the only major ceramic finish that’s been released is the ceramic Apple Watch.”

Apple Watch Edition Series 2 in brilliant white ceramic
Apple Watch Edition Series 2 in brilliant white ceramic

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Bring on as many exotic materials and finishes as possible! We love our Jet Black iPhone 7 Plus units, naked as the day they were born, and they still look great (we don’t throw them around and we keep them in a separate pants pocket, but we don’t baby them excessively, either, and they still look stunning!)

And, oh yeah, is it time yet for Liquidmetal?

I estimate that Apple will likely spend on the order of $300 million to $500 million — and three to five years — to mature the technology before it can used in large scale. — Dr. Atakan Peker, one of the Caltech researchers who invented Liquidmetal, May 2012

Apple patent describes Liquidmetal housing for electronic devices – January 27, 2017
Evidence suggests Apple to use breakthrough Liquidmetal somewhere soon – October 18, 2016
Apple supplier Catcher CEO: One iPhone model will adopt glass casing next year – May 19, 2016
Apple granted key U.S patent for Touch ID fingerprint recognition integrated into Multi-Touch display – May 18, 2016
Apple supplier LG Innotek embeds fingerprint sensor into display – May 4, 2016
Why the 2017 iPhone will be made of Liquidmetal – April 18, 2016
Ming-Chi Kuo: Apple’s 2017 iPhone to feature new ‘all glass’ enclosure – April 18, 2016
Professor behind Liquidmorphium Turing Phone invests in Liquidmetal, named to Board, enters into cross-licensing agreement – March 14, 2016
3D fingerprint sensors under Gorilla Glass may let Apple kill iPhone’s Home button – July 21, 2015
The Turing Phone is not made out of Liquidmetal – July 15, 2015
Why does Apple keep extending their partnership with Liquidmetal? – June 25, 2015
Apple extends Liquidmetal exclusivity deal through February 2016 – June 23, 2015
Apple working on eliminating the Home button on iPhone, iPad, sources say – June 22, 2015
Two new Liquidmetal patent filings from Apple revealed; list watch and jewelry among potential uses – April 23, 2015
Apple files for patent to move Touch ID fingerprint scanner from home button to display – February 9, 2015
Liquidmetal’s Apple alliance yet to bear fruit – September 30, 2014
Apple’s new Liquidmetal-related patent sparks speculation – July 7, 2014
Apple patents method for embedding sapphire displays in LiquidMetal device chassis – May 27, 2014
Liquidmetal-Visser agreement paves the way for more rapid adoption of amorphous metal manufacturing – May 21, 2014
Apple extends Liquidmetal exclusivity deal through February 2015 – May 21, 2014


  1. Before long, the iPhone will be miniturized to the size of a dime and be worn like jewelry: As a pendant around your neck; from a nose ring, or earring. With Siri, no buttons needed. It will be all talk.

    But before that possible future actualizes itself, the grid will melt down causing the NSA to lose ability to spy on us, and we’ll have to actually remember people’s names.

  2. in Apple devices. So far, I believe that Apple has only used LM for the sim tray on an older iPhone model (iPhone 4 ?). Some of that is due to cost, most likely. I honestly expected LM to appear first on the Apple Watch because it is smaller (less material) and am LM model could be priced higher, if needed, to offset any additional cost of materials and manufacturing.

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