Corning Says Flexible Glass for Smartphones Is Years Off
The president of Corning, which supplies scratch-resistant Gorilla Glass for smartphone screens, said products featuring flexible glass are at least three years in the future.While there has been some chatter lately about bendable glass technology applied to smartphones, watches, or other wearable connected devices, the president of Corning Glass Technologies, which supplies the glass for Apple's iPhone (as well as other handsets), said products featuring flexible glass are at least three years in the future. "People are not accustomed to glass you roll up," according to a Bloomberg News report quoting Corning President James Clappin in Beijing after the opening of an $800 million factory that produces LCD glass. "The ability of people to take it and use it to make a product is limited." Announced back in June 2012, this ultra-slim flexible glass, called Willow Glass, has the potential to enable displays to be wrapped around a device or structure, potentially revolutionizing the shape and form of next-generation consumer electronic technologies. Willow Glass is formulated to perform well for electronic components such as touch sensors and has natural hermetic properties that make it a seal for organic LED (OLED) displays and other moisture- and oxygen-sensitive technologies.
The glass is produced using the company's proprietary fusion process. The company said advances in fusion forming have made it possible to produce glass that is 100 microns thick—about the thickness of a sheet of copy paper.