Corning’s new Gorilla Glass 6 could be used in future iPhones, iPads

Corning Inc. has introduced its latest breakthrough in glass technology, Corning Gorilla Glass 6, which the company says is its most durable cover glass to date. This makes it a prime candidate for use in future iPhones and perhaps iPads.

Corning Gorilla Glass 6 improves upon Gorilla Glass 5 by surviving drops from higher heights, but, more importantly, has been engineered to survive multiple drops, according to John Bayne, vice president and general manager, Corning Gorilla Glass. 

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A recent worldwide Toluna consumer study revealed that, on average, people drop their phones seven times a year, with more than 50% of the drops occurring at one meter or below. To improve cover glass performance, Corning scientists developed and engineered an entirely new material to address the challenge of multiple drops. 

On average, in lab tests, Gorilla Glass 6 survived 15 drops from one meter onto rough surfaces, and is up to two times better than Gorilla Glass 5, according to Dr. Jaymin Amin, vice president of technology and product development, Corning Gorilla Glass and Corning Specialty Materials. Under the same test conditions, competitive glass compositions, such as soda lime and aluminosilicate, did not survive the first drop, he adds.

On May 12, 2017, Apple announced that Corning would receive $200 million from the company’s new Advanced Manufacturing Fund as part of the tech giant’s commitment to foster innovation among American manufacturers. 

The investment will support Corning’s R&D, capital equipment needs and state-of-the-art glass processing. Corning's 65-year-old Harrodsburg facility has been integral to the 10-year collaboration between these two innovative companies and will be the focus of Apple’s investment. 

“Corning is a great example of a supplier that has continued to innovate and they are one of Apple's long-standing suppliers,” Jeff Williams, Apple’s chief operating officer, said in a press release. “This partnership started 10 years ago with the very first iPhone, and today every customer that buys an iPhone or iPad anywhere in the world touches glass that was developed in America. We’re extremely proud of our collaboration over the years and we are investing further with Corning who has such a rich legacy of innovative manufacturing practices.”

Apple has committed to investing at least $1 billion with US-based companies as part of the fund, which is designed to foster innovative production and highly skilled jobs that will help lay the foundation for a new era of technology-driven manufacturing in the U.S.