New scratch test video suggests iPhone 6 front panel may not be sapphire

By , Jul 19, 2014

iphone 6 scratch

The consensus thus far has been that the iPhone 6 will feature a sapphire-covered display. Apple recently opened a plant to produce large amounts of the material, and we’ve seen videos depicting purported iPhone 6 panels as virtually indestructible.

But a new scratch test video suggests that the leaked iPhone 6 front panels floating around may not actually be made of [pure] sapphire. In the clip, YouTube veteran Marques Brownlee puts the panel to the test using Mohs scale of mineral hardness…

As Brownlee explains, the Mohs scale goes from 1-10, with 10 being the hardest. Minerals can scratch anything below it, but they can’t scratch anything above it. A steel knife is rated at a 5.5, Gorilla Glass 3 is a 6.8, and sapphire crystal glass is rated a 9.

Since the steel knife used in previous scratch tests is rated lower than Gorilla Glass and sapphire, Brownlee wanted to up the ante. So he picked up two types of sandpaper: garnet (a 7 on Mohs scale) and emery (8), and both were able to scratch the panel.

The results of the sandpaper tests suggest that the alleged iPhone 6 panel is not pure sapphire. So what is it? Brownlee opines that it could be next-gen Gorilla Glass, or some sort of hybrid sapphire laminate—something Apple has actually filed for a patent on.

Again we don’t know if this so-called leaked component is legit, and we have seen reports claiming that Apple is only using sapphire glass on the larger [5.5-inch] iPhone 6 due to cost. We’ll find out for sure when the handset is presented on stage in September.

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  • Bugs Bunnay

    i’d like to see if it will blend

    • denniswier

      yeah, i wonder if the pcb and metal frame will hold out ;) :3

    • Manuel Molina

      That is the question??!!

    • Harsh Sac

      Marquees has done a video on that already
      In fact it was so popular on the News that he decided to do this one…

  • Kamil Tetido

    I died a little inside when he scratched the 5S display that much…

  • quertyz

    “may not be sapphire”? more like “may not be entirely sapphire”

  • http://www.twitter.com/IDGAFViBeLuXUrY Vanessa Bitez

    Can’t wait to see a drop test. iPhone 5 was easily breakable. No one should care about scratch tests and should care about drops. Who carries sand in their pockets?

    • Capirexz

      Beach lover do you?

  • onesimpleclik

    Or maybe this display isn’t actually sapphire / the real thing?

    • justme

      a gooPhone leakes part LOL

  • i <3 Haters

    Omg who cares? As long as it does not scratch with coins in my pocket I am OK

  • i <3 Haters

    Also remember if Apple acutally makes pure sapphire sceen – it will cost pretty much. I wanna see same price like last year

  • felixtaf

    As MKBHD pointed out in his video, this display is a fusion product of Sapphire and Glass. This enhances flexibility (as shown in video) and makes the display less brittle. Sapphire is hard but brittle, so this fusion product can withstand scratches than Gorilla Glass 3 and wont break at the same time!

    ” Phil Schiller – Cant innovate anymore, my a** “

    • David Villamizar

      “Can’t innovate anymore, my ass” – Phil Schiller

  • using namespace std

    Perhaps it’ll be a blend of sapphire crystal and Gorilla Glass 3? I wouldn’t be surprised if it was, and Apple came up with some gimmick name for it.

    • JayDee917

      It’s going to be one or the other. Corning owns and manufacturers Gorilla Glass and wouldn’t allow Apple to “create their own blend” using their patented glass.

  • Simmy

    He said blend not bend, lol…..

  • Domodo

    Why doesn’t he give credit to his sources? Ever…? This is incredibly old news. (At least to any true fan! ;))
    And by the way, the scratching sound could be different due to the fact the iPhone 5S’s screen is properly mounted in the device and the sandpaper is likely scratching the plastic frame that surrounds it.

  • Firedomain

    I thought it was old news that Apple was planning to use a sapphire laminate glass surface with numerous layers or something like that…
    It would use way to much sapphire to cut a slice for every phone!

  • El Arqui Tecto

    I’m not planning having a sand paper in my pocket next to my iPhone 6…