According to DigiTimes and undisclosed industry sources in China, Xiaomi may want to use sapphire to protect the display of the Mi5. At the same time, DigiTimes notes that, if Xiaomi will indeed go ahead with this plan, it could have difficulties in securing enough sapphire displays, as the current production capacity is too low to meet the demand.
As previously reported, the screen of the new handset could be a 5.7-inch one with 1440 x 2560 pixels (Quad HD). Other features may include a 64-bit Snapdragon 810 processor, 3 GB of RAM, and a 20.7 MP rear camera.
Back in August, we heard that Xiaomi would use sapphire for the display of a limited edition handset - intending to manufacture only 50,000 units. So maybe the Mi5 will have two versions: a regular one, and a premium one with sapphire display. We could find out more about this in early January at CES 2015, when Xiaomi might officially announce the Mi5.
Some manufacturers have already released smartphones with sapphire displays. Just recently, Kyocera launched the rugged Brigadier in the US, while Huawei introduced an upgraded version of its Ascend P7.