It's kinda Corning to discuss GTAT sapphire
Gorilla Glass is amazing stuff! It’s strong, flexible and optically accurate so why use sapphire? Looking at it superficially…ahem… there really isn’t any reason to. At best, the hardness of sapphire comes at the expense of brittleness so even though you get less scratches, you get more cracks. No, the reason Apple decided to try sapphire was because it believes it can fuse the sapphire to a less expensive substrate where it will retain the hardness as a micro thin layer on that substrate. This is definitely an experiment that can go horribly wrong for both Apple and GTAT and should that happen, Corning will smile and tell Apple I told you so but let’s say Apple is successful and the new glass works like they planned. The entire Apple line will then feature this ‘Apple Glass’. Will this result in oven sales like crazy for GTAT? Nope. Apple will guard this technology like a favored child and will go to war with anyone who even tries to produce anything similar so you can count out all the other mobile and television producers from GTATs potential user base unless those manufacturers are willing to pay onerous licensing fees. We can safely assume that they won’t. This will be the cementing of the AAPL/GTAT relationship and GTAT will only grow in price as much as Apple will let them. This should be great news for Corning, it loses Apple but it gains all the other producers, right? Not so fast. Microsoft is looking at other nano-materials to fuse onto substrates and the other mobile producers will be under greater pricing pressure to compete in the market which in turn will hurt the pricing of gorilla glass. Hmmm, so who is the big winner? If Apple can make this new glass work, they once again get the lion’s share, if they don’t Google, Amazon and Microsoft will fight it out for the new king of consumer mobile products. Corning will do okay for as long as gorilla glass is not ‘outglassed’ by a competing product but considering all the nanotech materials research being done, this is not likely. The big loser in all this is GTAT. They sold their sapphire future to Apple for a measly 500 million dollars and if the Apple glass product fails, it may very well be their end as an independent company.