The Apple Watch 2 could come with Gorilla Glass SR+, a toughened cover glass for wearables recently unveiled by Corning. Corning is known for its toughened cover glass for smartphone displays called Gorilla Glass.
Toughened glass for wearables
Corning is a 160-year-old company, and since last year, it has been working on a material for wearables that is both as durable as Gorilla Glass and as scratch-resistant as sapphire glass under a project titled Project Phire, reports Gizmodo.
Scott Forrester, director of innovation products for Corning Gorilla Glass, said in a press release, “In early 2015, Corning launched Project Phire with the goal of engineering glass-based solutions with the scratch resistance approaching luxury cover materials, combined with the superior damage resistance of Gorilla Glass.”
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Gorilla Glass SR+ has some advantages over the display cover materials currently in use. Not only does it offer 70% better damage protection but also improved optical performance, leading to longer battery life and improved readability under direct sunlight due to it having 25% better surface reflection.
Gorilla Glass SR+ is now commercially available, and several global brands could use it in their next wearables. The sports variant of the Apple Watch features Ion-X glass, while the stainless steel and Edition variants sport sapphire glass, but the latter is very prone to getting cracked, the website notes.
Apple’s iPhone agreement with Corning has been somewhat mysterious. The iPhone maker doesn’t allow the glass maker to list the names of its products on its website. Therefore, it cannot be said if Apple will adopt the protective cover glass for the Apple Watch 2 or not, Gizmodo explains.
However, a combination of sapphire glass and Gorilla Glass would definitely generate customer interest, considering that the Apple Watch has not been a huge hit.
What to expect with the Apple Watch 2?
Apple is expected to release the second iteration of its smartwatch, the Apple Watch 2, on September 7 alongside the iPhone 7. Users must not expect a massive external redesign. It is believed that the company will be relatively conservative towards the design and offer a watch that builds on the already-recognizable visage of the original. There is little chance the Apple Watch 2 will feature a circular face, but we can expect a slimmer watch than the original.
A barometer sensor is one of the new features expected to be included in the Apple Watch 2. This functionality is commonly seen in smartphones, including the iPhone. With a barometer, the watch would be capable of measuring altitude. The Apple Watch 2 is expected to feature the S2 processor by TSMC, which would enable Apple to deliver shorter loading times and a more stable general environment.
There could be a GPS system as well, enabling the watch to access location data. There will be strong benefits of this in the health-tracking field, and it would open up the watch to other features as well. The device could also come with improved waterproofing, making it possible for users to swim while wearing the smartwatch.