Apple may be granted exclusive access to a new exotic metallic material produced by Liquidmetal Technologies. This new material is shiny like glass, but very strong.
Apple is no stranger to using metal in the company’s products. Virtually all of the company’s products, except for the MacBook, include metal aesthetics in some way.
Liquidmetal’s alloys are similar to glass, in appearance. Thought not translucent, they produce a very appealing sheen. Liquidmetal CEO, Thomas Steipp, claimed that they have figured out how to make the alloys very tough, “much like Pyrex glass is tougher than regular glass”. Check out the video below to see a demonstration of the elasticity of Liquidmetal’s alloys.
Even though Apple has been granted exclusive access to Liquidmetal Technology’s alloys, it may be a while before we see the new material in Apple’s consumer products. The reason: it is expensive! Most of Liquidmetal’s alloys contain exotic or rare raw materials, such as beryllium and platinum. Though used in many different items already, to use these alloys in popular consumer electronics may be too expensive.
“I believe there’s an opportunity for Liquidmetal to be a catalyst for changing the way that product designers think about building their products. It’s that different,” Steipp said. “We have to prove that, but certainly from what I’ve seen as technology executive evaluating the technology before I came in … we’ve made a lot of progress over the last eight years.” – CEO of Liquidmetal Technologies Inc., Thomas Steipp.
Via Associated Press