Sapphire is more fragile?
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  1. #1
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    Sapphire is more fragile?

    Please see the following article I spotted on CNN:

    Your next phone screen may be part sapphire
    Your next phone screen could be made of sapphire - CNN.com

    This seems to fly in the face of what is commonly stated here - that while sapphire is more scratch resistant, it is more prone to shattering upon impact. Anyone care to comment?

    Pat

  2. #2
    Seiko, Cartier Moderator Athram's Avatar
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    Re: Sapphire is more fragile?

    Quote Originally Posted by siodad View Post
    This seems to fly in the face of what is commonly stated here - that while sapphire is more scratch resistant, it is more prone to shattering upon impact. Anyone care to comment?

    Pat
    Nope that's one of the downside to sapphire crystals. You knock it hard enough and it'll shatter into pieces. Whereas other crystals like Acrylic will just crack but stay relatively intact, but acrylic is much more prone to scratches.

    Nothing to be concerned about though, it would take a fair amount of force to shatter a sapphire crystal.
    Last edited by Athram; March 22nd, 2013 at 02:21.

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    Member jtstav's Avatar
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    Sapphire is more fragile?

    It's true. Sapphire is more shatter resistant but the tradeoff is that it's hardness offers less give in the face of am impact so the vibrations from said impact would cause it to shatter. Metals are similar in this respect. For example tungsten carbide is highly scratch resistant but very brittle. Take a tungsten ring and drop it on a hard floor and there's a good chance it'll break into pieces. Same goes for sapphire glass.
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    Member Crunchy's Avatar
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    Sapphire is more fragile?

    I thought phones will be made of gorilla glass :?
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    WnS
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    Re: Sapphire is more fragile?

    Quote Originally Posted by Crunchy View Post
    I thought phones will be made of gorilla glass :?
    They are, but pretty soon sapphire will render GG obsolete. Now Corning (the maker of GG) can spin some BS and try to push a product with inferior specs or they can invest in some new equipment and start manufacturing sapphire.
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  7. #6
    Member Likestheshiny's Avatar
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    Re: Sapphire is more fragile?

    This seems to fly in the face of what is commonly stated here - that while sapphire is more scratch resistant, it is more prone to shattering upon impact.
    As with my watches, I'm much more worried that I'll scratch my phone's screen than that I'll shatter it. And, frankly, any impact that could shatter a sapphire screen would quite likely have ruined a gorilla glass screen as well (not to mention the rest of the phone). Phones now are pretty fragile -- switching to sapphire is unlikely to lead to meaningfully more broken phones, but it's quite likely to result in many fewer scratched phones.

    Or we can all just keep buying bulky, ugly cases to protect our slim, beautiful phones. That's always struck me as an especially silly solution, though.
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    Member Perseus's Avatar
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    Re: Sapphire is more fragile?

    I think the Speedmaster has caused some wives tales in the sapphire vs. acrylic department. I'd be curious to see a study that compares how much greater of an impact a acrylic can handle before breaking vs. a sapphire crystal.


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    Member RBrylawski's Avatar
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    Re: Sapphire is more fragile?

    Quote Originally Posted by Likestheshiny View Post
    As with my watches, I'm much more worried that I'll scratch my phone's screen than that I'll shatter it. And, frankly, any impact that could shatter a sapphire screen would quite likely have ruined a gorilla glass screen as well (not to mention the rest of the phone). Phones now are pretty fragile -- switching to sapphire is unlikely to lead to meaningfully more broken phones, but it's quite likely to result in many fewer scratched phones.

    Or we can all just keep buying bulky, ugly cases to protect our slim, beautiful phones. That's always struck me as an especially silly solution, though.
    Guilty as charged........my iPhone is in a protective shell, which is then stored in a leather case. You know to protect the fragile screen and avoid scratches.
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    WnS
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    Re: Sapphire is more fragile?

    Quote Originally Posted by Perseus View Post
    I think the Speedmaster has caused some wives tales in the sapphire vs. acrylic department. I'd be curious to see a study that compares how much greater of an impact a acrylic can handle before breaking vs. a sapphire crystal.
    The Speedmaster was useful in space because acrylic doesn't shard up when smashed. Sapphire shards are hazardous in microgravity and can jeopardise the entire mission. On Earth, a shattered sapphire is not much worse than some smashed glass on the ground. There you have it, if you're Earth bound, sapphire wins in almost all scenarios.
    Last edited by WnS; March 22nd, 2013 at 04:18.
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  11. #10
    Member Camguy's Avatar
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    Re: Sapphire is more fragile?

    I dropped my iPhone last week and the glass shattered. I had to replace the phone (I'm one who doesn't cover up what I think is an elegant piece of industrial design with a cheap plastic case, for better or, in this case, worse). Sapphire would have fared no better, so I guess it doesn't matter which material it was. I can't say I've ever scratched my screen either, so ditto. I mean what does one scratch a glass screen with anyway, a diamond ring? I don't see the benefit of sapphire on a phone, except for a certain "cool" factor and premium price.

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