Under the influence of Apple, manufacturers have maintained a positive outlook for sapphire substrate applications in consumer electronics, according to a Chinese-language CNA report. Aside from Apple, Taiwanese manufacturers are also quickening sapphire substrate patent applications.
Sapphire crystal possesses features of being stain, scratch and even corrosion resilient. In terms of hardness, the transparent material is only second to diamonds. The material’s application in high-end smartphones has opened a whole new frontier.
Smartphone manufacturers including LG, Samsung and HTC have introduced sapphire substrate in camera lens cover of new high-end smartphones, and home buttons to improve fingerprint sensor quality and protecting sensors from scratching. Smartphone applications has opened up a whole new world for sapphire substrate material outside of LED epitaxy applications.
As large international sapphire substrate manufacturers deploy patent strategies, Taiwanese manufacturers are speeding up patent strategies in response. Taiwanese sapphire substrate manufacturer Tera Xtal Techonlogy Co. for example, has deployed sapphire substrate optical intellectual property rights. The intellectual property rights cover sapphire substrate applications in smartphone camera lens cover, home buttons, sapphire and other applications.
In general, the outlook for sapphire substrate material applications in consumer electronics is positive. However, costs, mass production, and market popularity are still key issues for the material’s application in consumer electronics. Apple’s control of sapphire substrate material and patents has urged Taiwanese manufacturers to quickly deploy patent and intellectual property applications to establish their footing in future opportunities of offering diverse applications.