Verizon Wireless Coupon Codes:
Thanks to the recent corporate tax cut, Verizon has been handing out lots of incentives to their customers. One of them? Coupon codes for new cell phones. It’s a great deal for consumers, in the short term at least, as you may be able to grab a current generation smartphone for much less than you would have otherwise. You can see a list of the latest Verizon promo codes over at CouponCoder.com
Unbreakable Glass In Your Next Cell Phone:
Today’s smartphone screens provide sharp, crisp images that mobile users love. But these delicate displays present a major problem: drop them on the floor, and crash! It’s all over.
Phone manufacturers are working on new ways to make smartphone screens more durable and butter-finger friendly. A new and increasingly popular solution is found in manufactured sapphire.
What is Sapphire?
Sapphire is a strong material, second only to the diamond. It’s so strong that it’s used as a transparent armor for military vehicles. As you’ve probably already guessed, it’s also an expensive material. The main challenge is to make it in such a way that it would be cost-effective, keeping the average smartphone affordable.
With a sapphire screen, your phone would be protected from key scratches or shatters after drops to the asphalt. The spiderweb screen that renders your cyber-lifeline useless would become a thing of the past.
Sapphire Vs. Gorilla Glass
Gorilla Glass is currently used in the manufacture of iPhone and other smartphone screens. To give you an idea of the cost difference, a display from Gorilla Glass costs under three dollars. A sapphire display would cost upwards of about 30 dollars.
But competition and advancing technology are beautiful things. These factors should cause the price to go down over the next couple of years.
Sapphire is three times more durable and scratch-resistant than Gorilla Glass. In fact, Apple is using it now to keep the iPhone 5’s camera safe.
Eric Virey, Ph.D., Senior Market and Technology Analyst for Yole Développement, says that all of the major players in the mobile market are looking into changing over to sapphire technology. According to Virey, consumers should start seeing high-end smartphones with sapphire screens as early as this year.
Achieving Affordable Sapphire
Instead of pure manufactured sapphire, a laminate could prove to be far more cost-effective. In this process, a less expensive material with a protective sapphire cover could be used to prevent a screen from getting scratched or shattered. This solution would keep costs lower than a sapphire-only display, closer to what they are currently.
A company in New Hampshire called GT Advanced Technologies is working on sapphire sheets made thinner than a human hair. This process was originally used to create solar cells.
GT Advanced Technologies makes these sheets by melting aluminum oxide in custom furnaces. The aluminum oxide cools slowly to form a crystal. The crystal is sliced with a special saw to create the laminate.
GT believes their unique sapphire displays should be only three or four times the cost of Gorilla Glass. Representatives say that the price will decrease as improvements are made in technology and overall operations.
Sapphire Has Competition
Other companies in the US and abroad are hard at work to create ways that would make sapphire technology a cost-effective choice for the entire mobile phone industry. Technologies that already exist are also working to improve their products. For example, Corning, the makers of Gorilla Glass, have released a material that may be used in products sometime this year. They claim that the new Gorilla Glass is twice as scratch resistant as the original product.
Be on the lookout for new displays that will stand strong in the face of human clumsiness. As technology quickly advances, the sapphire option may prove to be an affordable alternative, helping users to avoid catastrophe by keeping their valuable mobile devices intact.
Bullis, Kevin. “Your Next Smartphone Screen May Be Made of Sapphire.” MIT Technology Review. MIT, 20 Mar. 2013. Web. 22 Mar. 2013.