Apparently Foxconn is going to start making sapphire glass iPhone displays

For what seemed like an eternity the mobile rumour mill was tearing itself apart with conflicting reports on whether or not apple would include sapphire glass in the iPhone 6. It did not, and then Apple’s supplier went bankrupt ending many a person’s sapphire display dreams. Those people are in luck, because apparently Foxconn have opened a factory specifically to make sapphire glass displays.

For those of you who don’t know, Foxconn is the manufacturing company that makes a very large number of components for the popular mobile companies — including Apple. According to Focus Taiwan, the China Economic Weekly is reporting that the company have just opened its new ‘display factory’ right next to the iPhone production lines. Presumably this is to create displays for the next wave of iPhones, and the reports indicate that they will indeed be made of sapphire glass.

Is this a good thing? We don’t know. During the original waves of sapphire glass rumours many people claimed that the material was far more durable and scratchproof than the glass used in smartphone displays at the time. After it became apparent that there would be no sapphire glass in the iPhone 6, reports started circulating claiming that sapphire glass was actually too brittle and would shatter far more easily than we are used to.

I’m not any sort of expert in material science, but given that the iPhone has developed a reputation for having a fragile screen its unlikely that Apple would do anything to make that worse. Luckily the new version of Gorilla Glass claims to be drop-resistant, so if the whole sapphire glass thing doesn’t pan out then Apple knows where to go.

It’s going to be a long time until we find out for sure, so enjoy hearing about sapphire glass none stop for the better part of a year. It’s going to be so much fun.

Tom Pritchard

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