Unbreakable LiquidMetal rumors return for the iPhone 5S and next iPad
posted by Michael H. / Jul 17, 2013, 11:02 AM
The rumor started with the iPhone 5, but never had much traction, because the technology couldn't really provide anything more than smaller components made of LiquidMetal. This time around, things are looking different. It started with a patent filing that was approved yesterday for "bulk amorphous alloy sheet forming processes". In plain English, it is a process which would allow the manufacture of sheets of metallic glass of variable thickness between 0.1mm and 25mm and in widths of up to three meters, which could be used in "any electronic device known the art".
The patent was granted to Crucible Intellectual Property, which is a shell company formed with the licensing deal between Apple and LiquidMetal Technology. The Boy Genius himself is predicting separately (he never mentions the patent filing in his prediction) that the iPhone 5S will use LiquidMetal, because back in May he handled the SIM card tray of an iPhone 5S, and claims it felt like LiquidMetal.
Of course, the technology to be able to make LiquidMetal components has existed for years, going back to the original Vertu devices in 2004. The question is whether the patent filing shows that the technology has evolved enough to build entire iPhone and iPad cases out of the material. Clearly, the patent shows that Apple and LiquidMetal Technology have a manufacturing method in theory, but unfortunately, patents don't always go beyond the theoretical and into a real world building scenario.
Given that the iPhone 5S is planned to launch in September, it is likely that Apple has already begun the mass production of the devices, since we are in the 2-3 month window before launch when manufacturing would ramp up. But, it is still unclear if this new production method was ready soon enough to scale for the demands of millions of iOS devices that would be hitting the market just a few months from now. It certainly doesn't help the rumor (or BGR's prediction) that aluminum cases were leaked straight from the Foxconn line earlier.
We can certainly believe that some internal components of the next-gen iOS devices will be made with LiquidMetal, because even a small piece will be enough to allow Apple's marketing machine to run with the claims. But, we haven't seen anything yet that would support the idea that the entire casing for the next iPhone or iPad will be made of the material.
Posts: 1612; Member since: Jan 16, 2012
Wow, apple's first real patent...oh wait it isn't really apple never mind haha.
posted on Jul 17, 2013, 11:06 AM 3
Posts: 4851; Member since: Apr 13, 2012
The S5 should equipe with this. With Exynos 5450 at 3.0Ghz along with side air vents to cool down the Cpu Gpu Pvrsgx554 at 700Mhz ©
posted on Jul 17, 2013, 11:16 AM 0
Posts: 1122; Member since: Jul 05, 2012
WOW Troll, you are so wise, i think Samsung or Apple should hire you to help them with their phones! /s
posted on Jul 17, 2013, 11:29 AM 9
Posts: 149; Member since: Sep 02, 2010
unbreakable housing + breakable screen, no sense at all especially when its the display and not the housing that the inevitable bumper case purchase will protect. Plus bet it still gets scratched and dented when you drop it, so whats the point. Just sales hype and another reason keep the price where it is, Sky high.
posted on Jul 17, 2013, 11:23 AM 3
Posts: 872; Member since: Apr 20, 2009
Too bad the glass display still isn't. No matter how strong the outer display is, it all comes down to physics in the end. All that energy from the fall and the impact has to be transferred somewhere...
posted on Jul 17, 2013, 11:37 AM 0
Posts: 1064; Member since: May 08, 2013
hmm maybe a phone case, (actual one with phone not like an otterbox) that transfers the kinetic energy into the floor or surface it gets dropped onto through like a an extremely conductive metal, or have a liquid metal case that has enough give so that once it drops the metal morphs so it like splats on the ground so it dosent break would be cool
posted on Jul 17, 2013, 12:08 PM 1
Posts: 1060; Member since: Nov 30, 2010
how about simply teaching people how not to drop the a phone. it would be apple's next step in keeping their precious phones in tact. it's not our fault the phone breaks its you. stop dropping the a phone. it's perfect
posted on Jul 17, 2013, 5:48 PM 0
Posts: 637; Member since: Oct 18, 2011
This concept of ours incorporated rumors of LiquidMetal back in 2012, and now they are alive again, despite being told that it was pretty impossible in this timeframe.
I doubt they could implement it so soon. Only in minor parts, like SIM tray in some limited iPhone 3GS models.
posted on Jul 17, 2013, 11:58 AM 1
Posts: 58; Member since: Dec 15, 2011
Has anyone broken the metal on their phone recently? ....me niether
posted on Jul 17, 2013, 1:13 PM 0
Posts: 427; Member since: Jan 21, 2011
umm.... im pretty sure they should be working more on making their screens break less. not the already just about unbreakable metal they already use.
posted on Jul 17, 2013, 8:50 PM 1
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