Make Your Smartphone Scratch-Free With Corning Incorporated (NYSE:GLW)’s Sapphire Like Glass
Corning Incorporated (NYSE:GLW)’s Gorilla Glass business came under pressure last year as its prime customer, iPhone maker Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) was supposedly about to flip to synthetic sapphire. Apple invested hundreds of millions of dollars into GT Advanced Technologies towards building synthetic sapphire, however, that supplier unexpectedly filed for bankruptcy protection, helping Corning to save the reputation of its Gorilla Glass.
For customers, the episode exposed a weakness in Gorilla Glass anti-scratch. While many think sapphire is the ultimate replacement for Gorilla Glass, owing to its scratch-resistant properties, that material is expensive and is also more likely to break if the device experiences a fall.
To find a way out and still overcome Gorilla Glass’ weakness, Corning Incorporated (NYSE:GLW) launched a secret mission dubbed ‘Project Phire.’ The project aims at combining the best properties of Gorilla Glass with sapphire to ensure better scratch-resistance and superior damage resistance. However, the company isn’t revealing much detail about its secretive mission, which is expected to go on sale later this year.
Corning Incorporated (NYSE:GLW) hasn’t revealed any information on which companies are interested in Phire, however, it could be used for the large displays of modern phones as well as for wearable devices like Apple Watch. Project Phire could help Corning increase its share of the smartwatch market, where Gorilla is used in the Motorola Moto 360 and several Samsung products.
Corning’s primary revenue streams from glass for TV displays and fiber-optics. Currently, Gorilla Glass is proving to be an important growth area for the company. The material is currently a leading player in hardened glass for mobile devices, being used for about 3 billion electronics. Gorilla Glass is commonly used in high-end devices like Samsung’s Galaxy Note 4 and Galaxy Note Edge as well as Apple’s iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus.
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